Events
   
Emblem Book
 

Upcoming Medieval and Renaissance Lectures in Pittsburgh

Spring 2014 Events
 

Bruce Holsinger (Professor of English, University Of Virginia) "Writing Medieval London: History, Fiction, Historical Fiction." Thursday, February 27, 4:00-5:30 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, Cathedral of Learning, Room 139 (Scottish Nationality Room).

The MRST Program will provide complimentary copies of Professor Holsinger's debut historical thriller A Burnable Book to a limited number of seminar attendees. Please reserve your copy early by e-mailing interim director Professor Emily Zazulia at ecz6@pitt.edu.

Susan Boynton (Professor of Music, Columbia University) "Sound and Image in the Middle Ages: Reflections on a Conjunction." Tuesday, March 18, 5:00-6:30 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, Cathedral of Learning, Room 512.

Although sound and image are characterized by markedly different temporal and material expressions, the experience and the idea of music are crucial to the received meanings of many works of medieval art. Links between art and music, rather than directly representational, are often indirect and elusive, as in the case of the capitals of the modes from the abbey of Cluny. Through several case studies, I will discuss the dynamic relationship between sound and image, the construction of musical images, and some ritual uses of music and image that shape the historical interpretation of visual culture.

Brian Curran (Professor of Art History, Penn State University) "Of Gods and Monsters: An Egyptian Bestiary in Early Modern Rome." Thursday, April 3, 4:00-5:30 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, Frick Fine Arts, Room 202.

In this talk, I explore the curious afterlife of the many Egyptian animal statues—lions, sphinxes, baboons, crocodiles, Apis bulls, and others—who once inhabited the gardens, palaces, and public spaces of Medieval and Early Modern Rome. Focusing on the "careers" of these works as they moved from place to place, and to new settings over the course of many centuries, I describe their rise, in some cases, to international fame as emblematic, "celebrity" statues in the antiquarian and intellectual, as well popular, tourist culture of the period from around 1300–1800. In addition to their inherent interest as tales largely untold, it is also hoped that these "cultural biographies" may cast a light on the social life of things in general, and art objects in particular

Fall 2013 Events
 

A Panel on Two New Books by
Marianne Novy and Jen Waldron

Thursday, September 12, 4:00 - 5:30 pm
University of Pittsburgh, Cathedral of Learning, Room 602

Shakespeare and Outsiders, by Marianne Novy
Respondent: Julie Bowman, CMU Ph.D. candidate in English

Reformations of the Body, by Jennifer Waldron
Respondent: Peggy Knapp, CMU Professor of English

Co-sponsored by the Women’s Studies and Medieval and Renaissance Studies Programs at the University of Pittsburgh. (poster)

Julie Crawford (Columbia University) "Shakespeare. Same Sex. Marriage." Tuesday, September 24 at 12:30 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, Cathedral of Learning, Humanities Center, Room 602.

Franklin Toker (Pitt, History of Art and Architecture) “Archaeological Evidence for the Origins of Christianity in Florence." Wednesday, September 18, 2013 at 12:00 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, Frick Fine Arts Auditorium, room 125 (poster).

Mini-Symposium at the University of Pittsburgh:
“Saracens and the West: Two Perspectives”
Tuesday, October 8 5:00 - 6:30 pm
Cathedral of Learning, Humanities Center, Room 602
Organizer: Renate Blumenfeld-Kosinski (French and Italian)

Sylvia Grove, "Community, cuisine, and critique in 14th century France: Food as insult in Honoret Bovet’s L’Apparicion maistre Jean de Meun"

James Staples, "The Saracens of the West: Honoré Bovet and the Decadence of a Schismatic Church"

Tim Stretton (St. Mary’s University, History) “Usury, Equity and Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice.” Thursday, October 10 at 4:30 pm at Carnegie Mellon University, Gates-Hillman Center, room 4215.

Scholars seeking legal contexts for The Merchant of Venice often focus on Elizabethan concerns about the evils of charging interest on loans and the rivalry between English common law and equity. In this lecture, Dr. Stretton questions both of these associations by examining litigation patterns from the time and suggests alternative social and economic, rather than legal, developments that gave the play its topicality.

Dr. Stretton is Professor of History at St. Mary’s University in Halifax, Nova Scotia. He specializes in the social history of law and litigation in Britain, with a focus on the legal rights and experiences of women, and in the intersections between law and literature in early modern England. His book, Women Waging Law in Elizabethan England (Cambridge University Press, 1998) uses legal sources, literary texts, and the records of the Court of Requests to examine how female litigants used the law, as well as fell victim to it. He is currently researching the history of coverture (the legal condition of married women) from the 16th century through to the early 20th century.

Sponsored by the Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies and the Department of English, Carnegie Mellon University.

Andrea Frisch (University of Maryland, College Park) "Moving History: Affect and National Memory in Late Renaissance France." Tuesday, October 29 at 4:00 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, Cathedral of Learning, Humanities Center, Room 602.

Marcy Norton (Department of History, George Washington University) "Aristocratic Hunting, Neo-Feudalism, and Animal Intersubjectivities." Monday, November 4, 5:00 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, Cathedral of Learning, Humanities Center, Room 602.

Nigel Smith (English, Princeton) “The European Marvell.” Friday, November 8 at 3:30 pm at Carnegie Mellon University, Baker Hall A51 - Giant Eagle Auditorium.

The Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies is excited to welcome Prof. Nigel Smith, William and Annie S. Paton Foundation Professor of Ancient and Modern Literature at Princeton University, to CMU for a public talk the afternoon of November 8th. Prof. Smith will be giving a talk titled “The European Marvell.” 
(poster)

Among numerous essays and edited works, Professor Smith is the author of several groundbreaking book-length studies of early modern culture and history, including Perfection Proclaimed: Language and Literature in English Radical Religion 1640-1660, Literature and Revolution in England 1640-1660, Is Milton better than Shakespeare?, and Andrew Marvell: The Chameleon.

Sponsored by the Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies and the Department of English, Carnegie Mellon University.

Spring 2013 Events
 

Marianne Novy (University of Pittsburgh, English)  “Shakespeare’s Two Antonios: Language, Stage History, and the History of Sexuality.” Monday, February 18th at 12:00 at the University of Pittsburgh, the Cathedral of Learning, Room 501G.

Shakespeare’s plays Merchant of Venice and Twelfth Night both contain men named Antonio who speak of their love for another male character. Both Antonios remain single at the ends of their plays while both of the men they love marry women.  Recent critics often see homosexual desire in the Antonios, and productions today often emphasize their exclusion from the comic community.  Some have argued, however, that these views lack historical awareness, whether because the Antonios exemplify the conventions of ideal friendship, or because the early modern period might have accepted their forms of same-sex desire.  However, one Antonio could also be considered an outsider because he is a melancholy character in a comedy, and the other because he is arrested and called a pirate. This paper considers the possible outsider or insider status of these characters in relation to the characters’ language and stage history and the history of sexuality. 

This talk is derived from Professor Novy’s book Shakespeare and Outsiders, forthcoming from Oxford University Press in June. The talk will introduce a few of the issues to be discussed in her new fall graduate course, Shakespeare, Gender, and Sexuality. 

Barbara H. Rosenwein (Loyola University of Chicago, History) “Patterns of Vernacular Affectivity in Late Medieval and Protestant England.” Wednesday, March 20th at 3:00 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, the Humanities Center, Cathedral of Learning, Room 602.

If the purpose of “Speaking in Tongues” is to bridge the divide between medieval and early modern studies, then one issue that must be faced is whether there was a great change in emotions or affectivity from one period to the other.  Certainly the prevailing thesis, hanging on the coattails of Norbert Elias’s Civilizing Process, is that there was a great change--and it can be summed up as the transition from medieval emotionality to modern restraint. 

In this paper, I take issue with that thesis by looking specifically at one form of emotionality, “affective piety.”  I argue that affective piety, as exemplified by Margery Kempe, continued to some degree, at least among some groups, even in the Protestant world.  My focus is on the testimonials of the members of a mid-17th century “gathered church””—that is, a Puritan church—near London.  Both Margery and the Puritans wrote in the vernacular, though of course that vernacular changed over time.  Thus my exploration is indeed about “speaking in tongues. “ I shall conclude with the thought that there are more continuities between medieval and early modern religious emotions than most historians have admitted. 

This event is part of a yearlong series, “Speaking in Tongues,” organized by the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program at the University of Pittsburgh and supported by a collaborative research grant from the University of Pittsburgh’s Humanities Center. For more information, please contact the Program Director, Professor Jennifer Waldron (jwaldron@pitt.edu), or see their website: http://www.medren.pitt.edu/

Anna Zayaruznaya (Princeton University, Music) “Medieval Song from Head to Tail.”  March 22nd at 4:00 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, the Music Building, Room 132.

From the heads and tails of individual notes to the foreheads and feet of song stanzas, medieval musical writings are replete with body parts. Sometimes the terms are used by convention, or in the service of simple mnemonics. But in other cases, the reasons for acts of musical anthropomorphization are less clear. Tracing the rhetoric of musical animation from the treatises into the realm of musica practica can give us fresh insight into some of the best-known songs of the later middle ages. Beyond this, the rhetoric of songs alive offers a useful alternative to the “work concept”—a musical ontology whose applicability before the Renaissance has been repeatedly called into question. The “creature concept” of song can serve as a powerful (if whimsical) tool for describing and analyzing musical things that are perishable but autonomous, subject to change and growth, and capable of doing work in the world.

John King (The Ohio State University, English) 

Lecture: “Print, Piety, and the Rise of Early Modern Vernacular” Monday, April 1 at 4:30 Humanities Center, Cathedral of Learning, Room 602 

Seminar: Professor King will also offer a seminar in the Humanities Center on Tuesday, April 2 at 12:30. Further details to come.

This event is part of a yearlong series, “Speaking in Tongues,” organized by the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program at the University of Pittsburgh and supported by a collaborative research grant from the University of Pittsburgh’s Humanities Center. For more information, please contact the Program Director, Professor Jennifer Waldron (jwaldron@pitt.edu), or see their website: http://www.medren.pitt.edu/

Carnegie Mellon’s Department of History Celebration of the publication of Allyson Creasman’s latest book: Censorship & Civic Order in Reformation Germany, 1517-1648 “Printed Poison & Evil Talk” (poster)

Friday, April 12 – 3:00-5:30 pm
Carnegie Mellon University
University Center, Connan Room (First Floor)

The history of the European Reformation is intimately bound-up with the development of printing. With the press’ unprecedented ability to distribute new ideas widely and cheaply, early modern authorities quickly recognised the importance of controlling the new medium. Dr. Creasman’s book reassesses the Reformation’s spread by examining how censorship impacted public support for reform in Germany’s imperial cities during the tumultuous “long Reformation.” Exposing the networks of rumour, gossip, cheap print and popular songs that spread the Reformation message, the book shows how ordinary Germans appropriated and adapted the printed word to their own purposes, and how print and oral culture intersected to fuel popular protest and frustrate official control.

Two distinguished scholars will comment on Censorship & Civic Order:
Professor Kathy Stuart, Dept of History, University of California/Davis
Professor Adam Shear, Dept of Religious Studies, University of Pittsburgh

Fall 2012 Events
 

Julie Hardwick (University of Texas at Austin, History)

Lecture: “Hanging Bankrupts: The Early History of Credit, Crime & Capitalism.”
Thursday, September 20 at 7:30 pm
Duquesne University, Africa Room, Duquesne Union.

Join Dr. Hardwick—author of Family Business: Litigation and the Political Economies of Daily Life in Early Modern France—as she explores how bankruptcy in France in the late 1500s became a capital crime, a felony punishable by death. With these legislative actions, governments sought to manage the novelty of the rapid expansion of credit. The security of the rights of creditors was essential to transformation of the economy we know today as capitalism, but the changes inherent in that development were also sources of great anxiety about the potential destabilization expanded credit posed to communities. Legal investigations into possible cases of bankruptcy revealed how men’s and women’s expanded use of credit presented commercial opportunity, financial peril and possibly legal jeopardy for spouses, families and communities.

Seminar: "Sociability, Sex and Single Pregnancy: The Social World of Young Female Workers in Early Modern France." Thursday, Sept. 20th from 12:00-1:00 pm.

Dr. Hardwick will also be leading a lunch-time seminar for graduate students on "Sociability, Sex and Single Pregnancy: The Social World of Young Female Workers in Early Modern France." The seminar will be in the Berger Gallery, second floor of College Hall, at Duquesne. Those wishing to attend should contact Professor Jotham Parsons (parsons@duq.edu) for lunch reservations and copies of the readings.

Rebecca Laroche (University of Colorado at Colorado Springs) “Roses in Winter: How One Recipe Collection May Coax Us Beyond Shakespeare's Procreation Sonnets.” Friday, September 28 at 3:00 at the University of Pittsburgh, the Cathedral of Learning, Room 501G.

Rebecca Laroche will take an ecocritical approach to Shakespeare's sonnets, speaking about the recipe archive with which she is currently working at the Chemical Heritage Foundation in Philadelphia.

Ann Blair (Harvard University, History)
Lecture: “Latin Authorship During the Rise of the Vernaculars” 
Monday, October 1 at 5:00
Humanities Center, Cathedral of Learning, Room 602

Seminar: “Collaborative Working Methods Among Early Modern Humanists”
Tuesday, October 2 at 12:00
Humanities Center, Cathedral of Learning, Room 602

This event was part of a yearlong series, “Speaking in Tongues,” organized by the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program at the University of Pittsburgh and supported by a collaborative research grant from the University of Pittsburgh’s Humanities Center.

Paula Findlen (Stanford, History and Philosophy of Science) Newton’s Shadow: Francesco Algarotti and the Passion for Science in the Eighteenth Century, The A. W. Mellon Distinguished Lectures in the History of Science at the University of Pittsburgh.

Lecture One: 
“Newton’s Prisms: Why Francesco Algarotti Became an Experimental Philosopher” 
October 22, 5 p.m.: Center for Philosophy of Science, Cathedral of Learning 817    

Lecture Two: 
“Writing A Scientific Bestseller: The Making of Newtonianism for Ladies” 
October 24, 5 p.m.: Center for Philosophy of Science, Cathedral of Learning 817    

Lecture Three: 
“Science in the Mirror of Enlightenment Europe:  Francesco Algarotti and the Remaking of a Cosmopolitan Book”
October 25, 5 p.m.: Frick Fine Arts Auditorium (Reception to follow in the Cloisters)    

Organized in Cooperation with University of Pittsburgh Press, Department of History and Philosophy of Science and the World History Center.

Early Modern Medicine and Natural Philosophy Conference at the Center for the Philosophy of Science, University of Pittsburgh.
November 2-4, 2012


For more information, please see the conference's website.
If you plan to attend, please register by emailing pittcntr@pitt.edu.

Symposium: "Crusade after the Crusades: Conquest, Colonialism, Contact Zones"
Friday, November 9, 10:00 – 5:00
University of Pittsburgh, Cathedral of Learning, Room 602

Organizers: Renate Blumenfeld-Kosinski (French and Italian) &
Bruce L. Venarde (History) 

Michael West (Pitt, English) “Mock-Heroic before the Enlightenment." Tuesday, November 13 at 12:30 at the University of Pittsburgh, the Cathedral of Learning, Room 501G.

This event was part of a yearlong series, “Speaking in Tongues,” organized by the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program at the University of Pittsburgh and supported by a collaborative research grant from the University of Pittsburgh’s Humanities Center.

PCMRS Graduate Student Colloquium
Saturday, November 17 at Carnegie Mellon University
The Adamson Auditorium, Baker Hall 136A

(Poster)

Philipp Rosemann (University of Dallas, Philosophy) “The Future of Vernacularity.” Thursday, December 6 at 4:30 at the University of Pittsburgh, the Cathedral of Learning, Room 501G.

This event was part of a yearlong series, “Speaking in Tongues,” organized by the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program at the University of Pittsburgh and supported by a collaborative research grant from the University of Pittsburgh’s Humanities Center.

Spring 2012 Events
 

Sarah Beckwith (Duke University, English) "Repairs in the Dark: Measure for Measure and the End of Comedy." Friday, January 13 at 12:30 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, the Cathedral of Learning, Room 602.

Sarah Beckwith works on late medieval religious writing, medieval and early modern drama, and ordinary language philosophy. In this seminar, we will discuss chapter three of her most recent book, Shakespeare and the Grammar of Forgiveness (Cornell, 2011). Professor Beckwith is also the author of Signifying God: Social Relation and Symbolic Act in York's Play of Corpus Christi (Chicago, 2001), and Christ's Body: Identity, Religion and Society in Medieval English Writing (Routledge, 1993). She is currently working on a book about Shakespearean tragedy and about philosophy's love affair with the genre of tragedy.   

The text, "Repairs in the Dark: Measure for Measure and the End of Comedy," will be pre-circulated. For a copy, please email Professor Jennifer Waldron (jwaldron@pitt.edu<mailto:jwaldron@pitt.edu>).

Cynthia Klestinec (Miami University of Ohio, English) “Temporary and Permanent Anatomy Theaters: the Stakes of Transition.” Friday, January 20 at 3:00 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, the Cathedral of Learning, Room 208B.

In the Renaissance, studying nature meant (most of the time) encountering nature. But these encounters, as Peter Dear has indicated, tended to generate a discussion (in the period and in the historiography) between unmediated sensory experiences and experiences organized by prior conceptual categories. This paper focuses on anatomical encounters, when anatomists articulated that distinction with clarity, in order to reconsider the significance of ephemeral and permanent anatomy theaters. The relationship between the two is usually described chronologically: theaters were temporary before they were permanent. This has encouraged a second view, namely that temporary theaters initiated the study of anatomy through human and animal dissection (the encounter with nature), and permanent theaters further developed that study. This paper will argue against such a seamless transition. Even when the permanent anatomy theater was built and in use in Padua, temporary theaters continued to provide more immediate, sensory experiences for professors as well as students.

Professor Klestinec will also be leading an informal seminar on material relating to her recently published book, Theaters of Anatomy: Students, Teachers, and Traditions of Dissection in Renaissance Venice (Johns Hopkins University Press 2011). If you would like to participate, please contact Bennjamin Goldberg (metabenny@gmail.com).

The University of Pittsburgh’s Humanities Center Colloquium
Thursday, February 2nd, 12:30-2:00 at the University of Pittsburgh, Cathedral of Learning, Room 602.

James Knapp (Pitt, English) and Peggy Knapp (CMU, English) "Aesthetics of Time: the Case of the Middle English Sir Orfeo," with responses from Ryan McDermott (Pitt, English) and Daniel Selcer (Duquesne, Philosophy).

Jonathan Scott (University of Auckland, History) "Maritime Orientalism, or, The Political Theory of Water." Wednesday, February 8th at 3:00 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, History Department Lounge, 3703 Posvar Hall.

This talk revisits the concept of orientalism in a long chronological context, including 4th Century BC Athens, Elizabethan and Caroline England, Enlightenment Europe, and colonial and contemporary New Zealand. It seeks to identify a specifically geographic component of this construct, which historians have neglected.

Jonathan Scott is Professor of History at the University of Auckland. Among many other books and articles, he is the author of When The Waves Ruled Britannia: Geography and Political Identities, 1500-1800 (Cambridge, 2011), Commonwealth Principles: Republican Writing of the English Revolution (Cambridge, 2004), and England's Troubles: Seventeenth-Century English Political Instability in European Context (Cambridge, 2000).

Dennis Looney (Pitt, French & Italian) "Reading Herodotus in Renaissance Ferrara." Thursday, February 9th at 5:00 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, the Cathedral of Learning, Room 501G, with reception to follow.

Dennis Looney is a professor of Italian at the University of Pittsburgh, with secondary appointments in Classics and Philosophy.  Publications include: Compromising the Classics (1996); Phaethon's Children: The Este Court and Its Culture (2005); 'My Muse will have a story to paint':  Selected Prose of Ludovico Ariosto (2010); and Freedom Readers: The African American Reception of Dante Alighieri and the Divine Comedy (2011). In his current project he considers the recovery and reception of ancient history and its representation in early modern thinking in Europe, examining the relation between history and literature, fact and fiction, storia and fabula.   

Sarah Alison Miller (Duquesne, Classics) "The Miraculous Breasts of Christina the Astonishing" Friday, February 17th at 3:00 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, Humanities Center, Cathedral of Learning, Room 602.

Sarah Alison Miller joined the Classics department at Duquesne University in 2008. Professor Miller received her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (2008). Her book, Medieval Monstrosity and the Female Body (Routledge 2010), argues that the female anatomy and its physiological processes were marked as "monstrous" in medieval medical, erotic, and religious literature.

Jeremy Dauber (Columbia University, Germanic Languages and Literatures) (Columbia University, Germanic Languages and Literatures) “Frightening Jews: Toward a Definition of Jewish Horror.” Wednesday March 28th at 12:00 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, Humanities Center, Cathedral of Learning, Room 602.

Jeremy Dauber is Atran Associate Professor of Yiddish Language, Literature and Culture at Columbia University. He specializes in Yiddish literature. His first book, Antonio's Devils: Writers of the Jewish Enlightenment and the Birth of Modern Hebrew and Yiddish Literature, was published in 2004 by Stanford University Press. In 2006 he and Joel Berkowitz will publish an anthology of their translations of landmark Yiddish plays. He is the coeditor of Prooftexts: A Journal of Jewish Literature, a leading journal in the field. Professor Dauber's research interests include older Yiddish literature, Yiddish and Hebrew literature of the Jewish Enlightenment and the nineteenth century, and Yiddish theater.

This talk is sponsored by the Program in Jewish Studies at the University of Pittsburgh and co-sponsored by the Program in Medieval and Renaissance Studies at the University of Pittsburgh.

Su Fang Ng (University of Oklahoma, English)

Lecture: "Speaking Transnationally: Early Modern European Cross-Cultural Exchanges with Islamic Southeast Asia." Thursday, March 29th at 4:30 pm at Carnegie Mellon University at the Giant Eagle Auditorium, Baker Hall A51.

“You taught me language, and my profit on’t/ Is, I know how to curse,” thus Shakespeare’s Caliban accused his master Prospero of linguistic colonialism. But how accurate was this picture of transnational communication? When Europeans entered the sphere of the Indian Ocean, in what language or languages did they speak? This paper considers early modern European translingual exchanges with Southeast Asia, the aim of European long-distance voyaging as the ultimate source of sought-after spices, examining in particular the role of Malay, a lingua franca of the spice trade, as a global language.

Dr. Ng is Associate Professor of English at the University of Oklahoma. She specializes in early modern literature with a secondary interest in postcolonial literatures. Her book, Literature and the Politics of Family in Seventeenth-Century England (Cambridge University Press, 2007), examines how the putatively conservative analogy between state and family was used for radical political ends. Her second book project, Global Renaissance: Early Modern Classicism and Empire from the British Isles to the Malay Archipelago, explores how Greek and Roman models of empire became part of native histories of the early modern maritime kingdoms of England and in Southeast Asia.

Sponsored by the Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies and the Department of English, Carnegie Mellon University. Co-sponsored by the University of Pittsburgh Program in Medieval and Renaissance Studies. 

Seminar: “A New Comparative Literature.” Friday, March 30th at 12:30 pm in the Humanities Center at the University of Pittsburgh, Cathedral of Learning, Room 602.

The pre-circulated text for discussion in this seminar will be Professor Ng’s forthcoming article, “Dutch Wars, Global Trade, and the Heroic Poem: Dryden's Annus Mirabilis (1666) and Amin's Sya'ir Perang Mengkasar (1670).” For a copy, please email the Program Director, Professor Jennifer Waldron (jwaldron@pitt.edu).

Rick Scorza (Resident Research Scholar at the Morgan Library, New York) "Popes, Pirates, Espionage and Galley Slaves:  Vasari's Lepanto Frescoes in the Sala Regia of the Vatican Palace." Thursday, April 5th at 4:30 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, Frick Fine Arts, Room 202.

Dr. Scorza took his M Phil from the Warburg Institute in the Survival of the Classical Tradition and then completed a PhD in Art History at the Warburg. He has published significant articles on a variety of topics in The Burlington Magazine, the Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes, and elsewhere. He has also contributed to exhibition catalogues, most recently for the Giorgio Vasari exhibition in Arezzo celebrating the 500th anniversary of Vasari's birth. He has given papers in several international conferences, including one titled "The Iconography of Slavery."

This talk is sponsored by the Department of the History of Art and Architecture at the University of Pittsburgh and co-sponsored by the Program in Medieval and Renaissance Studies, the Humanities Center, the History Department, and the Department of French and Italian at the University of Pittsburgh.

Estelle Lingo (University of Washington, Art History) "Francesco Mochi and the Edge of Tradition." Friday, April 13th at 4:00 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, Frick Fine Arts, Room 202.

Estelle Lingo is Associate Professor of Art History at the University of Washington. She specializes in early modern European art, especially sculpture. Her first book, François Duquesnoy and the Greek Ideal (Yale, 2007), examined seventeenth-century Flemish sculptor François Duquesnoy and his pursuit in Rome of a modern artistic practice in "the Greek manner." The study reconstructs the understanding of Greek art from 1550 to 1650 and the contributions of Duquesnoy's circle to the coalescence of the Greek ideal within European culture. This seventeenth-century vision of Greek art is shown to have formed the basis of Johann Joachim Winckelmann's early understanding of the formal perfections of Greek sculpture, overturning the longstanding assumption that no meaningful distinction between ancient Greek and Roman art was made prior to Winckelmann's work. Her current book project focuses on the Tuscan sculptor Francesco Mochi (1580-1654); the study takes Mochi's sculptures as the entry point for an inquiry into the historical and cultural forces reshaping sculpture at the beginning of the seventeenth century. Other research interests include Caravaggio, Gian Paolo Panini's Gallery Views, and the Italian perspective on the Grand Tour.   

This talk is sponsored by the Department of the History of Art and Architecture and co-sponsored by the Program in Medieval and Renaissance Studies at the University of Pittsburgh.  

The Middle Ages and the Holocaust: Medieval Anti-Judaism in the Crucible of Modern Thought - A One-Day Conference at the University of Pittsburgh
Sunday, April 22nd
(colloquium schedule).

From medieval pogroms to modern racial science, Jewish history in Europe has come to stand as a test case for thinking about problems of historical continuity and change, embodied most clearly in the tension between narratives emphasizing a timeless antisemitism and arguments for the distinctive mentalities associated with discrete historical periods. Our colloquium, "The Holocaust and the Middle Ages," seeks to reexamine Jewish history as a multi-layered problem of narrative and conceptualization, in which deeply interested anti-Jewish narratives from the premodern world form points of explosive contact with modern literary and historical modes of analysis. Part of our work is to examine how later historical lenses, such as the interests of post-Reformation history and the consuming project of Holocaust history, have substantially dictated the terms of modern understanding of Jewish-Christian relations, often with distorting effects. At the same time, medieval paradigms of religious conflict continue to operate as the unacknowledged foundations for contemporary efforts to think about problems of political conflict rooted in religious difference.   

Our objective is to bring together a small group of scholars and encourage significant interdisciplinary dialogue between medievalists and specialists in later fields, including particularly Reformation history and Holocaust studies. In doing so, we hope to move beyond generalities about the evolution of Western patterns of religious conflict to gain critical purchase on the ways in which our narratives for thinking about these problems are deeply imbricated in the assumptions, needs, and theories at work within discrete moments of historical thought.

Eleanor Johnson (Columbia, English) "Medieval Vernacular Literary Theory: the Ethics of Form." Thursday, May 3rd at 3:00 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, Cathedral of Learning 602 (poster).

What is “literary theory” in the Middle Ages, and what are its major concerns? It has become clear to scholars that there are Latin treatises that carefully theorize how literature works on the human psyche—more specifically, how literary experience promotes ethical improvement in a reader. But there were other types of works—fictive works and vernacular works—that contributed to the emerging conversation on the relation of ethics to aesthetics at least as much as did these Latin treatises. This talk will telescope in on a particular set of texts—fictive, mostly vernacular—that not only theorizes how literary reading promotes ethical transformation, but also puts that theory into practice.

Professor Johnson specializes in late medieval English prose and poetry, medieval poetics and philosophy, law and literature in the Middle Ages, early autobiography, and vernacular theology. She is finishing a book entitled Sensible Prose and the Sense of Meter: Boethian Prosimetrics in Fourteenth-Century England, concerning the literary-theoretical underpinnings of the efflorescence of prose and verse in late fourteenth-century England. She is also working on the medieval law of waste. Her recent works include an article on time and affect in The Cloud of Unknowing, published in the Journal for Medieval and Early Modern Studies (2011). Two collections of her poetry, The Dwell (Scrambler Books) and Her Many Feathered Bones (Achiote Press) were published in 2009 and 2010.

This talk is sponsored by Distinguished Professor Paul Bové, editor of boundary 2, an international journal of literature and culture.

For more information, please contact the MRST Director, Professor Jennifer Waldron (jwaldron@pitt.edu), or consult the website: http://www.medren.pitt.edu.

Fall 2011 Events
 

Atria Larson (Catholic University) "Postpartum and Menstruating Women and the Immutability of Natural Law:  A Twelfth-Century Discussion" Wednesday, October 12 at 4:00 at the University of Pittsburgh, 3702 Posvar Hall, History Department Lounge.

This lecture will examine Gratian's discussion in the Decretum of the Hebraic precepts of Leviticus 12 and 15 pertaining to women who have just given birth and women who are menstruating. These women were forbidden from entering the temple, being considered unclean. These precepts serve as a test case for Gratian's arguments that natural law is immutable.   

Atria A. Larson received her Ph.D. with distinction from the Center for Medieval and Byzantine Studies at The Catholic University of America in October 2010. She has published articles on various eleventh and twelfth-century topics, including Anselm of Canterbury's doctrine of Mary, the pardons of Emperor Henry III, and Gratian's Decretum, with special emphasis on De penitentia. She spent the 2009-2010 academic year in Munich on a Fulbright grant.

Gonzalo Lamana (University of Pittsburgh) "The Hydra: Forked Discourses, Taxidermy, and Freedom in Early Colonial Peru" Thursday, October 20 at 12:30 at the University of Pittsburgh, Cathedral of Learning, Room 602.

Gonzalo Lamana is Associate Professor in the Department of Hispanic Literatures and Languages at Pitt. He is the author of Domination without Dominance: Inca-Spanish encounters in Early Colonial Peru (2008).

Sponsored by the Humanities Center at the University of Pittsburgh.

Elina Gertsman (Case Western Reserve University) "Holy Anatomy, Animate Substance: the Shrine Madonna as a Performing Object" Thursday, October 27 at 4:00 at the University of Pittsburgh, Cathedral of Learning, Room 501G.

Professor Gertsman specializes in Gothic and late medieval art. She is the author of many articles and two books: The Dance of Death in the Middle Ages: Image, Text, Performance (2010) and the editor of Visualizing Medieval Performance: Perspectives, Histories, Contexts (2008).

Joanna Picciotto (UC Berkeley) Seminar: “Intellectual Labor in the Garden of Eden: Milton and the Paradizable Reader” Friday, November 11 at 12:30 at the Humanities Center in the Cathedral of Learning, Room 602.

The essay will be pre-circulated. For a copy, please email Prof. Jennifer Waldron (jwaldron@pitt.edu).

PCMRS: GRADUATE STUDENT COLLOQUIUM at Carnegie Mellon University: On Friday, November 11 and Saturday, November 12th, the Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies will host panels and a keynote lecture. The finalized schedule of panels.

Joanna Picciotto (UC-Berkeley) Friday, November 11 at 4:30 at Carnegie Mellon University in the Adamson Wing auditorium (Baker Hall 136A).

Friday night's keynote speaker for the Graduate Student Colloquium will be Joanna Picciotto, Associate Professor of English at UC-Berkeley and author of Labors of Innocence in Early Modern England (2010, Harvard). 

"This talk explores the discourse of physico-theology, the experimentalist strain of Christian apologetics devoted to revealing the Creator’s wisdom “in every fibre of a Plant, in every particle of an Insect, in every drop of Dew,” as Joseph Glanvill put it. This “experimentall divinitie” takes shape in the mid-seventeenth century through such works as John Wilkins’s A Discourse Concerning the Beauty of Providence in all the Rugged Passages of It (1649), Walter Charleton’s The Darknes of Atheism Dispelled by the Light of Nature: A Physico-Theologicall Treatise (1652), and Henry More’s An Antidote Against Atheisme, or An Appeal to the Natural Faculties of the Minde of Man, whether there be not a God (1653); the recognized classics of the genre are John Ray’s The Wisdom of God Manifested in the Works of the Creation (1691) and William Derham’s Physico-Theology: Or, A Demonstration of the Being and Attributes of God, from his Works of Creation (1714).

Although physico-theology has been widely mocked for its notoriously circular arguments, sophisticated readers had an appetite for this literature. I suggest that by sustaining experiments in provisional identification with “people” up and down the chain of being, this discourse (and the poetry of natural description it inspired) offered readers an alternative to the anthropocentrism that shaped traditional, hermeneutic approaches to nature and that governs its careless development today."

Valerie Traub (University of Michigan) Wednesday and Thursday, November 16 & 17 at the University of Pittsburgh.

PUBLIC LECTURE
"Shakespeare's Sex"
Wednesday, November 16 at 3:00
Cathedral of Learning, Room 332

HUMANITIES CENTER SEMINAR
"Anatomy, Cartography, and King Lear"
Thursday, November 17th at 12:30
Cathedral of Learning, Room 602
This essay will be pre-circulated. For a copy, please email the Humanities Center at humctr@pitt.edu

Valerie Traub is Frederick G. L. Huetwell Professor of English and Women's Studies at the University of Michigan. She is the author of The Renaissance of Lesbianism in Early Modern England. Other books include Desire & Anxiety: Circulations of Sexuality in Shakespearean Drama (1992) and two co-edited collections: Feminist Readings of Early Modern Culture: Emerging Subjects (1996) and Gay Shame (2009).

This visit is co-sponsored by the Humanities Center, the Women's Studies Program, and the English Department Literature Program.

Spring 2011 Events
 

Tamar Herzig (Tel Aviv University) "Italian Saints Against Bohemian Heretics: Heterodoxy, Witchcraft, and Mysticism c.1500." Tuesday, February 8 at 4:30 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, the Cathedral of Learning, Room 602.

This paper explores the propagation of the fame of St. Catherine of Siena (1347-1380) and her late-fifteenth century female Dominican emulators—four Italian sante vive (living saints) who were famous for their paramystical experiences—in the Kingdom of Bohemia. Tamar Herzig has been a senior lecturer in early modern history at Tel Aviv University since 2007. She is the author of Savonarola's Women: Visions and Reform in Renaissance Italy (Chicago, 2008).

Co-sponsored by University of Pittsburgh’s Medieval & Renaissance Studies Program, the Department of French and Italian, the Humanities Center, the Women’s Studies Program, and the Department of Religious Studies.

Stephen Greenberg (Coordinator of Public Services, History of Medicine Division - National Library of Medicine) Lecture on Harry Potter and medieval medicine: "Magic & Monsters in the Stacks: How Harry Potter Came to the National Library of Medicine.” Tuesday, February 22 at 6:00 p.m. in Scaife Hall at the University of Pittsburgh.

Please visit the University of Pittsburgh's Health Sciences Library System webpage for more information.

Sponsored by the Health Sciences Library System at the University of Pittsburgh.

Daniel Selcer (Duquesne University) “Invisible Ink: Atomizing Textual Materialism in the Seventeenth Century.” Thursday, February 24 at 4:30 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, the Cathedral of Learning, Room 501G.

This paper tracks the use and transformation of this image in early modern philosophical texts from the work of Gassendi through Guillaume Lamy to Pierre Bayle in order to explore the way seventeenth century materialisms bring to the foreground of the very artifacts of their articulation: ink, paper, characters, pages, and books. Daniel Selcer is an Associate Professor of Philosophy at Duquesne University.  He is the author of Philosophy and the Book: Early Modern Figures of Material Inscription (Continuum, 2010).

Co-sponsored by the University of Pittsburgh’s Medieval & Renaissance Studies Program and the Cultural Studies Program.

Vagantes: the annual, traveling conference for graduate students and the study of the Middle Ages will be held at the University of Pittsburgh, March 3-5, 2011.

For more information, please see the Vagantes website.

Sylvia Pamboukian (Robert Morris University) “The World of Harry Potter: Medieval Medicine, Science, and Magic.” Tuesday, March 15, 2011 at 6:00 p.m. in Scaife Hall at the University of Pittsburgh.

Sponsored by the Health Sciences Library System at the University of Pittsburgh.

Within the Boundaries: Jews and Others in Medieval French Culture
March 18th, 2011 at the University of Pittsburgh,
Humanities Center, Cathedral of Learning, Room 602.

This is a one-day mini-colloquium designed to bring to an audience of faculty and graduate students some of the cutting-edge research on the intersection of Jewish and medieval French studies.

Co-sponsored by the University of Pittsburgh’s Medieval & Renaissance Studies Program, the Humanities Center, the Department of French and Italian, and the Program in Jewish Studies.

Emma Wilson (Pitt) “In search of the 'Clew of Ariadne' (Zachary Coke): Logic, Literature, and Falling From Grace in the Seventeenth Century.” Tuesday, March 22 at 4pm at the University of Pittsburgh, the Humanities Center, Cathedral of Learning, Room 602.

Emma Wilson is a member of the inaugural cohort of Arts and Sciences Postdoctoral Fellows at Pitt. She is the co-editor of two essay collections on the logician and pedagogue Petrus Ramus and is currently working on two monographs, one on John Milton, and the other entitled In Defence of Logic: A History of Early Modern Logic 1543-1724.

This paper argues for the priority of logic over rhetoric as a mode of structuring all forms of discourse, whether prose, poetry, or drama, in the early modern period. It culminates in a pragmatic application of this methodology to compare and contrast Milton and Marvell's uses of logic in representing falls from grace (and indeed, redemption) in fallen human language.

Sponsored by the University of Pittsburgh’s Medieval & Renaissance Studies Program.

James C. Bulman (Allegheny College) “Three Faces of Hamlet: A Performance Approach.” Thursday, March 24 at 4:30 pm at Carnegie Mellon University in the Adamson Wing, Baker Hall 136A.

James C. Bulman is the Henry B. and Patricia Bush Tippie Professor of English at Allegheny College.  His research fields of interest include: Shakespeare and Renaissance drama, Milton, modern drama as well as performance studies. In addition to earning his PhD from Yale University, Professor Bulman has won numerous awards including the Julian Ross Award for Excellence in Teaching and an NEH Research Fellowship. Professor Bulman has held multiple positions with the Shakespeare Association of America including President and most recently the Board of Trustees.  

A prolific researcher and scholar Professor Bulman is General Editor of the Shakespeare in Performance Series (1984-2009). His most recent book length publications include Shakespeare Re-Dressed: Cross-Gender Casting in Contemporary Performance (2007) and Shakespeare, Theory and Performance (1996). He is currently editing Henry IV, Part Two, The Arden Shakespeare 3rd Series and has two forthcoming essays: “Performing the Conflated Text of Henry IV: The Fortunes of Part Two,” in Shakespeare Survey 63 and “To gain the language, ‘tis needful that the most immodest word be looked upon and learnt”: Editing the Bawdy in Henry IV, Part Two” in Shakespeare/Adaptation/Modern Drama (University of Toronto Press).

Sponsored by the Carol Brown Lecture Series at Carnegie Mellon.

Christopher D. Johnson (Harvard University, Comparative Literature) “Cesi's Lynx, Tabular Reason, and the Natural Desire for Knowledge.” Friday, March 25 at 3:30 pm at Duquesne University in College Hall 104.

This paper examines how Federico Cesi (1585-1630) and his Accademia dei Lincei make the publication of an encyclopedic natural history of the New World into a proving ground for the new science, tabular order, and humanist learning. When Cesi and his collaborators turn their "lynx-eyes" to the plants and animals of the New World in the Rerum medicarum Novae Hispaniae thesaurus (1651) they both dilate and condense what they see. Dilation creates a wealth of particulars; whereas condensation results in Cesi's Phytosophical Tables, which would furnish readers with a visual and verbal "syntax" by which nature's unity can be distilled from endless multiplicity. Contemplating the Thesaurus, these Tables, and other parts of Cesi's encyclopedism, I read these artifacts as belonging to a strain of late Renaissance syncretism that valiantly tries to marry empirical, Aristotelian, and Neoplatonic modes of thought.

Bad Hamlet
A play written by Lillian DeRitter & Anthea Carns
Free and open to the public
Sunday, April 3rd at 2:00 pm
Bellefield Hall Auditorium
315 South Bellefield Avenue

Set in the void between text and performance, Bad Hamlet witnesses the battle between six seminal versions of the melancholy Dane: three female Hamlets from different time periods and the three textual versions of Shakespeare’s Hamlet, the earliest of which is often called the Bad Quarto. What started off as two battling scholars' academic exercise quickly becomes a story about a courtier’s fight to save not one but two Ophelias and to keep his best friend from sacrificing himself to an ideal that no one can truly capture: the legacy of Hamlet itself.

Bad Hamlet was originally produced at Carnegie Mellon University as part of the Playground Festival. The play has recently been accepted for the Last Frontier Theatre Conference in Valdez, Alaska.

This performance is co-sponsored by the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program at the University of Pittsburgh, the Women’s Studies Program and Undergraduate Dean John Twyning in the School of Arts and Sciences.

Michael Gardiner (Pitt, Music) "Imaging the Waves of a Silent Past: The Role of Performance Decisions in Shaping the Musical Space of Hildegard von Bingen's Ordo Virtutum." Tuesday, April 5th at 4:30 pm at the University of Pittsburgh’s Humanities Center, Cathedral of Learning 602.

This paper examines the musical space of Hildegard von Bingen's drama, the Ordo Virtutum (ca. 1150), and proceeds to consider, using spectrographic imaging software, how variant performances/recordings both clarify and obscure possible understandings of this expansive, eighty-seven chant meditation.  (This presentation is intended for a general audience and does not require the ability to read music.)   

Michael Gardiner is a music theorist, composer and a member of the inaugural cohort of Arts and Sciences Postdoctoral Fellows at Pitt.  He received his doctorate from the New England Conservatory where he studied with Pozzi Escot, president of the International Society of Hildegard von Bingen Studies. His articles on Hildegard, John Cage, and reconsiderations of the musical work have appeared inCurrent Musicology, Sonus and Qualelibet. 

Fall 2010 Events
 

Wendy Hyman (Oberlin College, English) “The Metaphor of Science: Figurative Language and Natural Philosophy in the Seventeenth Century.” Friday, October 8th at 2:00 p.m. at the University of Pittsburgh’s Cathedral of Learning, Room 144.

The talk examines the literary aspects of early modern scientific prose, especially the relationship between epistemology and rhetoric. For Thomas Browne, as for poets like Spenser and Donne, metaphor was a forensic device: a perfectly sensible epistemological tool to use on a complex world. Donne's Expostulation XIX asserts with equanimity that God is both a literal and metaphorical God, and metaphor is also a powerful tool for understanding the cosmos in Sir Thomas Browne's Religio Medici. The talk then looks at the subsequent demotion of figurative language by the Royal Society (especially Boyle and Sprat), for whom metaphor was *the* impediment to scientific knowledge.

Professor Hyman's research and teaching interests are primarily in sixteenth- and seventeenth-century literature, the history of science and intellectual history, Ovidianism and mythology, and lyric of all periods. She offers courses on Shakespeare, early modern poetry and drama, and several interdisciplinary topics, from the history of the book to the prehistory of the literary cyborg.

She is currently editing a book called The Automaton in English Renaissance Literature (forthcoming, Ashgate, LSCEM series), on the wide variety of inanimate objects that come to “life” in early modern literature. She is also working on a book manuscript, Skeptical Seductions: Carpe Diem Poetry and the Eroticism of Doubt. She has an article on Spenser's Faerie Queene in ELR, and on Thomas Nashe and early modern authorship in SEL. Other current scholarly interests are on literary incest and its role in theories of mimesis, and on the philosophical concept of “nothing” in the Renaissance.

Anthony Grafton (Princeton) Wednesday and Thursday, November 3 & 4 at the University of Pittsburgh.

Wednesday, Nov. 3, 5:00 pm
Public Lecture in Frick Fine Arts Auditorium
"How Jesus Celebrated Passover: Renaissance Scholarship and the Jewish Origins of Christianity"
The talk will focus on scholarly efforts to see Jesus as part of a Jewish world, and the Last Supper has the central role in the story.
A reception will follow in the Frick Fine Arts Cloister, 6 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

Thursday, Nov. 4, 12:30 pm
Humanities Center Seminar CL 602 
"Humanities and Inhumanities"
We will discuss Grafton's review of Louis Menand's book, The Marketplace of Ideas: Reform and Resistance in The American University. The review is from the February 17, 2010, issue of The New Republic: 
http://www.tnr.com/article/politics/humanities-and-inhumanities

Anthony Grafton is one of the world’s most influential scholars of Renaissance humanism and the early modern European “Republic of Letters.” As author, coauthor, editor, or translator, he has published close to twenty books on a variety of topics concerning early modern European culture. He writes about subjects such as footnotes and forgeries, the history of books and readers, Renaissance magic and the legend of Doctor Faustus, and the significance of technical details in early modern astrology, chronology, and science. Three collections of essays, Defenders of the Text (1991), Bring Out Your Dead (2001), and Worlds Made by Words (2009), cover most of the topics and themes that appeal to him. A regular contributor to The New Republic and The New York Review of Books, Grafton has taught at Princeton University since 1975. Professor Grafton has been the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship (1989), the Los Angeles Times Book Prize (1993), the Balzan Prize for History of Humanities (2002), and the Mellon Foundation’s Distinguished Achievement Award (2003). He was recently elected President of the American Historical Association for 2011.

This talk is generously co-sponsored by the University of Pittsburgh Humanities Center and the University of Pittsburgh's Program in Medieval and Renaissance Studies.

Keith Luria (North Carolina State University, History) "Cultural Boundaries in Early Modern Missions: The Catholic Reformation in Annam." Thursday, November 18, at 4:30 p.m. at Carnegie Mellon University in Baker Hall 136A. Reception to follow.

This talk will examine seventeenth-century accounts of Jesuit missionaries in Annam (Vietnam) as an example of the European perception of cultural boundary-building.  Missionaries claimed success in their evangelizing campaign by recasting some of the most radically foreign religious elements of Annamese culture in ways European could recognize.  But to do so they had to play on tensions within the self-definition of the Catholic Reformation.

Professor Luria studies early-modern France and Europe, especially its cultural, religious, gender, and social history. He has examined these issues in two books, Territories of Grace: Cultural Change in the Seventeenth-Century Diocese of Grenoble (Berkeley, 1991) and Sacred Boundaries: Religious Coexistence and Conflict in Early Modern France (Washington, DC, 2005). He has also written on topics such as the history of popular culture, religious conversion, and Catholic missions.  He is currently interested in the history of religious coexistence, missions in and beyond Europe during the early-modern period, the meanings of religious conversion, and the European encounter with non-European religions during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.

Sponsored by the Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval & Renaissance Studies.

Jane Taylor (Durham University, UK) "What Becomes of Tristan and Yseut in the Renaissance?" Tuesday, November 30th at 4:30 p.m. at the University of Pittsburgh’s Cathedral of Learning 252.

In this talk, Professor Taylor will argue that Jean Maugin's Nouveau Tristan (1554) marks a shift from courtly devotion to ironic flirtation. Maugin turns the courtly love between Tristan and Iseut into what the seventeenth century called "galanterie": that is, an ironic and literary aesthetic that emphasizes skill with words rather than true devotion. 

Professor Taylor's current research focuses on three topics: the late-medieval French lyric; Arthurian romances and how they are translated, adapted, and rewritten in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries; and the rewritings of François Villon's poetry in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, in France and in England. She holds an honorary doctorate from the University of Reims and has been President of the International Arthurian Society. She is the author of many books, including The Making of Poetry: Late-Medieval French Poetic Anthologies (2007) and The Poetry of François Villon: Text and Context (2001). Along with Lesley Smith, Taylor has edited several important volumes on women and the book, including Women and the Book: Assessing the Evidence (1997), Women, the Book and the Godly (1995), and Women, the Book and the Worldly (1995). 

This talk sponsored by the University of Pittsburgh's Program in Medieval and Renaissance Studies, the Department of French and Italian, the Department of the History of Art and Architecture, and the Women's Studies Program. For more information, visit www.medren.pitt.edu.

Spring 2010 Events
 

Jean Givens (University of Connecticut) "Picturing the Healing Arts: Illustrating a Medieval Book of Remedies." Thursday, January 28 at 4:30 pm the University of Pittsburgh, 202 Frick Fine Arts.

Jean Givens is Professor of Art History. Her research centers on medieval England and France, the history of history of visual and verbal literacy, and design initiatives in twentieth-century Denmark and Sweden. Her books include Observation and Image-Making in Gothic Art (Cambridge University Press, 2005)--awarded the Medieval Academy of America's John Nicholas Brown Prize for 2009-and Visualizing Medieval Medicine and Natural History, 1220-1550 (Ashgate, 2006) co-edited with historians of science, Karen Reeds and Alain Touwaide. A new book on medieval and early modern scientific illustration, Reading Beyond the Text: Image, Word, and the Illustrated Tractatus de herbis, is nearing completion. Her current project, Marketing Modernism: Sweden, Denmark, and the Good Life, addresses a formative alliance between design theoreticians and Nordic policy makers between 1920 and 1960.

Sponsored by the University of Pittsburgh's Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program.

Ayanna Thompson (Arizona State) Thursday and Friday, February 25 & 26 at the University of Pittsburgh.

Thursday, Feb. 25, 4:30 pm
Public Lecture: "Othello in the 21st Century"
Location: G8 Cathedral of Learning, on the ground floor
.

Friday, Feb. 26, 11:00 am
Faculty/Grad seminar: "Shakespeare, Race, and Contemporary America"

Cathedral of Learning 512

"Othello in the 21st Century": Is it possible for Shakesepare's Othello to say something of contemporary relevance to a twenty-first-century audience? Or must the play exist as a museum piece of a bygone history and culture, and of bygone cultural constructions? This talk will explore the roles that Othello should play in our twenty-first-century American world. One example will be Peter Sellars's 2009 production of Othello, which destabilized traditional narratives about Shakespeare, race, and performance.

Ayanna Thompson is Associate Professor of English and an affiliate faculty member in Women and Gender Studies and Film and Media Studies at Arizona State University. She specializes in Renaissance drama and focuses on early depictions of race. She is the author of two books: Passing Strange: Shakespeare, Race, and Contemporary America (forthcoming from Oxford), and Performing Race and Torture on the Early Modern Stage (Routledge, 2008). She is the editor of two books: Weyward Macbeth: Intersections of Race and Performance (Palgrave Macmillan, 2010), co-edited with Scott Newstok, and Colorblind Shakespeare: New Perspectives on Race and Performance (Routledge, 2006).

Professor Thompson will also hold an open seminar for faculty and graduate students on the topic of "Shakespeare, Race, and Contemporary America." We will convene on Friday, February 26th at 11:00 am in room 512 of the Cathedral of Learning.

This talk is generously co-sponsored by Dean Juan Manfredi of the School of Arts and Sciences and by the Department of English.

For more information, contact Professor Jennifer Waldron (jwaldron@pitt.edu).

Andras Kisery (CCNY) "The Politics of Hamlet: Histories of Reading." Monday, March 15 at 4:30 pm at Carnegie Mellon in A18A Porter Hall.

In recent scholarship, Shakespeare’s Hamlet has once again become a political play. But early modern audiences were also reading versions of Hamlet’s story as narratives about sovereignty, legitimacy and political advancement. In this paper, I approach the politics of the play through its Shakespearean and non-Shakespearean readings and revisions, and highlight some of the shifts they register in the understanding of the realm of politics.

Sponsored by The Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies.

Amnon Raz-Krakotzkin (Ben-Gurion University of the Negev) "Censorship and the Secularization of Jewish Discourse."  Friday, March 19 at 2:00 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, Cathedral of Learning 501.

Amnon Raz-Krakotzkin is Senior Lecturer in History at Ben-Gurion University. Raz-Krakotzkin has written and lectured widely on various topics of Jewish history: the history of Zionism; the Holocaust; issues of nationalism and the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. His most recent book, The Censor, the Editor and the Text (Penn, 2007), examines the impact of Catholic censorship on the publication and dissemination of Hebrew literature in the early modern period. He is currently a fellow at the Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies at the University of Pennsylvania.

Please join us for refreshments after the talk!  Questions? Please contact Professor Jennifer Waldron (jwaldron@pitt.edu).

Sponsored by the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program, the Program in Jewish Studies, and the Humanities Center at the University of Pittsburgh.

Dan Brayton (Middlebury College) "Shakespeare and the Sea: Why Blue Ecocriticism Matters."Wednesday, March 24 at 4:30 pm at Chatham University in the Welker Room in the Laughlin Music Center.

Dan Brayton is Assistant Professor of English and American Literatures at Middlebury College, where he also teaches in the Environmental Studies Program. He earned his doctorate at Cornell in 2001 and has published in English Literary History, Forum for Modern Language Studies, Shakespeare Quarterly, Scribners’ British Writers series, and WoodenBoat. His has held visiting appointments at Sea Education Association as well as the Williams-Mystic Program in Maritime Studies and has worked aboard sailing ships in the Atlantic, Pacific, and the Caribbean. He is co-editor of a forthcoming volume of early modern eco-criticism (Eco-critical Shakespeare), is the Literature, Art, and Music section editor of a new journal, Coriolis: the Interdisciplinary Journal of Maritime Studies and working on a monograph called Shakespeare and the Global Ocean: Towards a Blue Ecocriticism.

Co-sponsored by The Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies and the Rachel Carson Institute at Chatham University.  Free and open to the public.

Gonzalo Lamana (Pitt) "Truth, Self-Evidence, and the Colonial Question (ca. 1500)." Friday, April 16 at 3:00 pm at the University of Pittsburgh, Cathedral of Learning 501.

Gonzalo Lamana's research and teaching explore themes of colonialism and subalternity, cultural contact, meaning-making, and historical change. He is the author of several articles and a recent book, Domination without Dominance: Inca-Spanish encounters in Early Colonial Peru (Duke, 2008). Lamana is currently working on two new research projects at the juncture of de-colonial attempts. The first examines colonial acts of reality-making through the lens of magic, while the second examines the emergence of a colonial grammar of difference in the second half of the sixteenth century in the Andes.

Fall 2009 Events
 

Andrew Cutrofello (Loyola University Chicago) "The Dreadful Summit of the Cliff: Kant, Shakespeare, and the Sovereignty of Reason." Friday, Aug. 28 at 3:15 pm at Duquesne University in the Simon Silverman Phenomenology Center, Gumberg Library.

In 1766, Wieland published the first German translation of *Hamlet*. That same year, Kant published a short monograph entitled *Dreams of a Spirit-Seer Elucidated by Dreams of Metaphysics*. In this strange text, Kant chastised himself for having hitherto believed in the existence of ghosts. For the first time, he announces the need for a critique of reason, a project that would take him fifteen years to complete. By then, a veritable Shakespeare cult had grown up in Germany around *Sturm und Drang*. Kant took note of this development, occasionally expressing his wariness about Shakespeare in his lectures on anthropology. In my paper, I suggest that the entanglement between Kant and Shakespeare runs much deeper than has been suspected.

Andrew Cutrofello is a Professor in the Philosophy Department at Loyola University in Chicago.  He is the author of *Imagining Otherwise: Metapsychology and the Analytic A Posteriori* (1997), *The Owl at Dawn: A Sequel to Hegel's Phenomenology of Spirit* (1995), *Discipline and Critique: Kant, Poststructuralism, and the Problem of Resistance* (1994), and *Continental Philosophy: A Contemporary Introduction* (Routledge, 2005).  He is currently writing a book about the impact of *Hamlet* on modern European philosophy.

Sponsored by the Department of Philosophy at Duquesne University.

ICMA Fall Conference in Pittsburgh, Friday and Saturday, October 2-3.

A collaborative conference between the International Center of Medieval Art and The Department of History of Art and Architecture, University of Pittsburgh, with co-sponsorship from the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program at the University of Pittsburgh.

Speakers: Franklin Toker, Nancy Wicker, Kate Dimitrova, Kirk Ambrose, Susan Ward, John Williams, Michael Curschmann, Renate Blumenfeld-Kosinski, Alison Stones, Lisa Reilly, Sarah Bromberg, Lawrence Nees, Danielle Oteri, and Colum Hourihane.

For the full program, please see the ICMA website:
http://www.medievalart.org/htm/events.html

Larry Rhu (University of Southern Carolina) "Shakespeare Italianate: Skeptical Crises in Three Plays of Shakespeare." Friday, October 9 at 5pm at The University of Pittsburgh.

Tucci Lecture, Department of French and Italian Co-sponsored by the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program at the University of Pittsburgh.

Nancy Regalado (New York University) "Who Tells the Stories of Poetry? Villon and his Readers." Thursday, October 29 at 4:30pm at the University of Pittsburgh, 202 Frick Fine Arts.

This talk is drawn from Professor Regalado's current project on the question of why Villon's poetry produces stories. So much of fourteenth- and fifteenth-century poetry is interwoven with historical characters, including the poets themselves, and poets such as Froissart and Machaut often set their lyrics in a narrative. But only Villon's poetry (with all its proper names) makes the reader undertake the task of storytelling.

Nancy Regalado is Professor of French at New York University. Professor Regalado has written and edited many books and articles on medieval literature and culture, addressing topics such as lyric and narrative, reader reception, and performance theory. Her most recent publications include _Performing Medieval Narrative_ (Oxford, 2005), and essays on Villon's Testament and the songs of Jehannot de Lescurel. She has received fellowships from the ACLS and the National Endowment for the Humanities, among many others, along with two teaching awards from NYU.

Co-sponsored by the Department of French and Italian at the University of Pittsburgh.

Two lectures on the topic "The Idea of France in the Middle Ages and Renaissance.” Tuesday, November 3 at 2:30pm at the University of Pittsburgh, Cathedral of Learning, Room 501.

DAISY DELOGU (University of Chicago)
"A Natural King and a Free People: Philippe de Mézières's 'Dream of the Old Pilgrim' (1386-89)"

KATHERINE CRAWFORD (Vanderbilt University)
"Salic Law and the Politics of Exclusion"

Humanities Center event, co-sponsored by the Department of French and Italian and The Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program at the University of Pittsburgh.

Richard Firth Green (Ohio State University) “The Tale of the Vanishing Leper and Other Medieval Urban Legends." Thursday, November 19 at 4:30 at Carnegie Mellon University in Porter Hall A18A.

Professor Green argues that we can find tales in 13C medieval collections of preachers' exempla that conform precisely (not merely in content but in form) to modern urban legends (better termed 'contemporary' legends), a genre that until recently has been thought to be exclusively modern.

Symposium on Medieval and Renaissance Studies: Wednesday, December 2 from 5:00 to 7:00pm at Carnegie Mellon University.

An informal discussion with Pittsburgh faculty Allyson Creasman (CMU), Frank Toker (Pitt), Jen Waldron (Pitt), Dan Selcer (Duquesne), Adam Shear (Pitt), Renate Blumenfeld-Kosinski (Pitt), and Peggy Knapp (CMU), all of whom will briefly describe their fields of interest. Graduate and Undergraduate students can see who's doing what, what courses will be offered, and what books are hot.  As in Plato's day, a symposium is a festive occasion implying food as well as conversation; accordingly, the roundtable will be followed by a light supper for everyone who comes, so we can converse in smaller groups.

Sponsored by the Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies.

Sabine MacCormack (Notre Dame) Thursday and Friday, December 3 & 4 at the University of Pittsburgh’s Cathedral of Learning.

Thursday, 12:30pm, 526 CL
Colloquium discussion of a chapter from her book In The Wings of Time: Rome, the Incas, Spain and Peru

Thursday, 5pm, 501 CL
Lecture, "The Poetics of Representation in Viceregal Peru: A Walk Round the Cloister of San Agustin in Lima"

Friday, 1pm, 526 CL
Discussion of José de Acosta's travel narrative, led by Prof. MacCormack

Humanities Center events, co-sponsored by the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program at the University of Pittsburgh.

Spring 2009 Events
 

Jonathan Sawday (University of Strathclyde in Glasgow), "Blanks: A Story of Absence"Thursday, January 22nd at 4:30 p.m. at Carnegie Mellon University in the Adamson Wing, Baker Hall 136A.

This lecture will trace part of the history of representing blanks -- gaps, absences, voids, -- in literature and in art from the Renaissance to the present. Jonathan Sawday holds the Chair in English Studies at Strathclyde University. His latest book is Engines of the Imagination: Renaissance Culture and the Rise of the Machine (London and New York, 2007). (bio - poster)

Sponsored by the Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies.

Hannah R. Johnson (Department of English, University of Pittsburgh) "Allegories of Violence: The Medieval Ritual Murder Accusation and Scholarly Projects of Memory." February 19th at 4:30 p.m. at the University of Pittsburgh's Cathedral of Learning, room 501.

Hannah R. Johnson earned her Ph.D. from Princeton University after receiving an M.A. in Medieval Studies from the University of York (UK). Her teaching and research interests encompass medieval historical writing and modern historiography, contemporary philosophies of history, and the literary aspects of medieval cultural forms committed to truth-telling projects, such as saints’ lives and travel narratives. Her book manuscript, "Crimes and Libels: The Ethics of Memory and the Medieval Ritual Murder Accusation in Jewish History,” examines the intersection of ethical commitments and methodological questions in modern historical writing about the ritual murder accusation. Her most recent article, “Rhetoric’s Work: Thomas of Monmouth and the History of Forgetting,” appeared in volume 9 (2008) of New Medieval Literatures. She has been the recipient of a Mellon fellowship and several research awards.

Professor Johnson’s talk will be followed directly by a MRST Open House Reception. All Pitt/PCMRS students, faculty, partners, and friends are welcome! For location details contact Jen Waldron (jwaldron@pitt.edu)

Sponsored by the University of Pittsburgh’s Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program.

James Martel (Department of Political Science, San Francisco State University) “Hobbes and the ‘Error of Separated Essences’: Rhetoric, Authority and Sovereignty in Leviathan.” Friday, February 27 at 3:15 pm at Duquesne University, College Hall room 220.

Abstract: In this talk I will discuss how the method we use to read a text effects, or even produces the meaning of a given text and also what the political connotations of such a reading might be. In particular, I will be discussing how we read Thomas Hobbes’ Leviathan, one of the central canonical texts for political theory. My argument is that when we read Leviathan according to the instructions for reading that Hobbes describes in that book, our understanding of the text changes from one where sovereignty is promoted at the expense of the individuals who form a society, to one in which sovereignty is actually undermined by precisely those individual subjects, or readers, who constitute what can, for lack of a better word, be called “the public.” Hobbes method of reading, demonstrated via his interpretation of scripture, is anti-idolatrous. He opposes what he calls “the error of separated essences” whereby a metaphor or other figure of speech supplants what it is meant to represent (his prime example is the soul, which is originally meant to simply represent “a person” but has superseded that person and become immortal). When we use language idolatrously, we produce an entire system of phantasms, what Hobbes calls “the kingdom of darkness.” When however we use language in a way that is explicitly aware of its representational nature, we engage in a humbler and, I would argue, more democratic, discourse. By analogy between author and text on the one hand and sovereign and subjects on the other (an analogy he frequently makes) we can apply the lessons that we learn about reading the text Leviathan to the political world that Leviathan describes. We see that the sovereign itself could be considered a “separated essence,” a figure who purports to stand for the public but in fact replaces them with its own inflated conception. James Martel is the author of Love is a Sweet Chain: Desire, Autonomy, and Friendship in Liberal Political Theory (Routledge, 2001) and Subverting the Leviathan: Reading Thomas Hobbes as a Radical Democrat (Columbia, 2007).

Joanna Woods-Marsden (Department of Art History, UCLA) "L'Arme and Gli Amori: Gendered Identity in Titian's Portraits for the Este Court of Ferrara." Thursday, March 26th at 4:30 p.m. at the University of Pittsburgh, room 202 at Frick Fine Arts.

The lecture deals with two portraits by Titian. The first is that of Alfonso I d'Este, Duke of Ferrara [Prado, Madrid]. Since his right hand rests on cannon that he cast himself, the talk begins with a focus on war and politics. The other portrait is that of his low-born mistress (the daughter of a hat-maker), Laura Dianti [Kisters Coll., Switzerland], so there is a gender component too, because mistresses of humble origins are rarely identified. She is accompanied by a black child page, the first to appear in Western art, so the paper also has considerable discussion about race in the Renaissance.

Joanna Woods-Marsden got her B.A. and M.A from Trinity College, Dublin University, and her Ph.D from Harvard University. After working in Canadian museums and universities, she joined the faculty at UCLA in 1984, where she is Professor of Italian Renaissance art. Her research interests include the social context for and the function of art, as well as issues of identity in portraiture; Renaissance Self-Portraiture: The Visual Construction of Identity and the Social Status of the Artist was published by Yale in 1998. Her current book project also involves portraiture: The Visual Rhetoric of Power and Beauty: Gendered Identity in Titian's Court Portraits. She has long focused on feminist critical issues, and published “Portrait of the Lady, 1430-1520” in the exhibition catalog Virtue and Beauty, National Gallery of Art, 2001. While Samuel H. Kress Senior Fellow at CASVA (National Gallery of Art) in 2002-03, she did research toward a book-length study of Renaissance portraits of women. She has also published widely on issues of patronage, court art and artists (The Gonzaga of Mantua and Pisanello's Arthurian Frescoes, Princeton, 1988, and many articles). As a Fellow of Villa I Tatti in Florence and the American Academy in Rome, and the recipient of many awards, she has lived in Italy for many years and traveled extensively in that country as well as throughout Western Europe.

Sponsored by the Department of the History of Art and Architecture, The Department of French and Italian, The Cultural Studies Program, and The Women’s Studies Program.

Stuart Clark (Department of History, Princeton University) "The Temptations of St. Anthony and the Art of Discernment." Friday, April 3rd at 4:30 p.m. at Carnegie Mellon University in the Erwin Steinberg Auditorium, Baker Hall A53.

Dr. Clark’s talk will explore the representation of St. Anthony the great – the father of monasticism – in European art of the 15th to 18th centuries and in the theology and demonology of the period. 

Stuart Clark studied at University of Wales, Swansea and at Cambridge. He was senior lecturer in the Department of History at UW Swansea from 1995-98 and then Professor from 1998 to 2008. He is currently teaching at Princeton University (2008 – 2009). He has been a Member of the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, and Lilly Fellow at the National Humanities Centre, North Carolina. He was elected to the British Academy in 2000. His many publications include Vanities of the Eye: Vision in Early Modern European Culture (Oxford, 2007), and Thinking with Demons: The Idea of Witchcraft in Early Modern Europe (Oxford, 1999).

Sponsored by the Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies.

Fall 2008 Events
 

Colum Hourihane (Princeton University), “Quid is Veritas? Trying to Disentangle the Real from the Mythical Pilate” Thursday, October 9th at 3:30 p.m. in The University of Pittsburgh's Frick Fine Arts Building, Room 203.

Hourihane is Director of the Index of Christian Art at Princeton University, and the author of two recent studies of medieval art, The Processional Cross in Late Medieval England (2005) and Gothic art in Ireland,1169-1550 (Yale, 2003). He has also edited diverse essay collections, including Spanish Medieval Art (Arizona, 2007) and Objects, Images, and the Word (Princeton, 2003).

Sponsored by the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program at the University of Pittsburgh.

Mauro Perani (University of Bologna) “What is the ‘European Genizah’? A Survey of Hebrew Manuscript Discoveries in Italy and Spain and their Importance for Jewish Studies” Monday, October 27th at 4:00 in The University of Pittsburgh's Cathedral of Learning, Room 501.

University of Bologna Professor Perani is currently a Padnos Distinguished Visiting Professor at the Frankel Center for Judaic Studies (University of Michigan). He has been Director of “The Italian Genizah Project” since 1992, and his recent publications include Talmudic and Midrashic Fragments from the ‘Italian Genizah’: Reunification of Manuscripts and Catalogue (Giuntina, 2004).

Co-Sponsored by the Jewish Studies Program and the Department of French and Italian at The University of Pittsburgh.

Julia Reinhard Lupton (University of California, Irvine)
Public Lecture:
     Thursday, November 6th at 4:00 p.m. in the Cathedral of Learning G24,
      “Mrs. Polonius Goes to Italy: An Intimate Guide to Shakespeare's
      Europe”

This entertaining and educational jaunt through Shakespeare's Italy explores the weird and wonderful iconography of hotels, hospitality, safe sex, prescription medicine, and forbidden books in Romeo and Juliet, All's Well That Ends Well, and Othello. For more information, please see: www.thinkingwithshakespeare.org/index.php?id=277

Seminar for Faculty and Graduate Students:
     Friday, November 7th, 1:30 p.m. in the Cathedral of Learning 362,
      “Shakespeare and Italy: Enter through Theory”

Julia Reinhard Lupton is Professor of English and Comparative Literature at the University of California, Irvine. Her publications include Citizen-Saints: Shakespeare and Political Theology (Chicago, 2005) and Afterlives of the Saints: Hagiography, Typology, and Renaissance Literature (Stanford, 1996). She has written extensively on Shakespeare, religion, and psychoanalysis. See her website for more details: www.thinkingwithshakespeare.org

Rosamond Purcell & Michael Witmore "Hearsay: On the Universal Languages of Nature" Friday, November 7, 4:30 p.m. at Carnegie Mellon University in the Erwin Steinberg Auditorium, Baker Hall A53.

Please join the Pittsburgh Medieval & Renaissance Colloquium and the Silver Eye Gallery on Friday, November 7th for "Hearsay: On the Universal Languages of Nature" with Rosamond Purcell and Michael Witmore, 4:30 p.m. at Carnegie Mellon University’s Irwin Steinberg Auditorium, Baker Hall A53.

Photographer and essayist Rosamond Purcell has led a distinguished career photographing and writing about natural wonders, curiosities, and collections in museums of natural history.  In this joint dialogue with Renaissance scholar Michael Witmore, Purcell will present a number of images from past and recent work that depict objects which seem to carry with them stories for which there is no origin: occasions for hearsay, one might say. A recurring theme in their discussion will be the ways in which objects taken from nature -- fossils, bones, figured stones -- possess morphological features that are strangely suggestive of language -- an idea that has since at least the Middle Ages led some commentators to seek a universal language in the "Book of Nature."  The presentation will also include photographs of human-made objects that seem to participate in this larger world of signs.

Rosamond Purcell is a world-renowned artist who has photographed behind the scenes in the collections of major museums for more than twenty-five years. Michael Witmore is a professor of English at the University of Wisconsin-Madison specializing in Renaissance studies.  He was formerly a professor of English at Carnegie Mellon University and the director of the Pittsburgh Medieval and Renaissance Consortium.  His book, Culture of Accidents: Unexpected Knowledges in Early Modern England (co-winner of Perkins Prize for Narrative, 2003), explored the ways in which narrative depictions of "accidental events" allowed them to serve as moments of discovery around the turn of the seventeenth century. (poster)

Sponsored by the Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies and Silver Eye Center for Photography.

Spring 2008 Events
 

Lecture: Timothy Hampton (Department of French and Comparative Literature, UC-Berkley), “The Useful and the Honorable: Literature, Diplomacy, and the Ethics of Mediation in the Late Renaissance” Friday, Febuary 8th at 4:30 in the Adamson Wing, Baker Hall 136A, at Carnegie Mellon University.

This paper will explore a point of contact between the Renaissance political practice of diplomacy, and the emerging discourse of secular literature. Modern diplomatic practice takes shape in and around the culture of Renaissance humanism, which offers deeply idealistic accounts of how diplomacy works. By the late sixteenth century, however, diplomatic theory struggles to bring humanist moral and ethical ideals into harmony with the contingencies of practical diplomacy. One of the ways in which writers reflect on the changes in diplomacy's relationship to moral philosophy is through a consideration of whether political action is to be 'useful' (that is, politically expedient), or 'honorable' (that is, morally correct). This is a topic that occurs repeatedly in discussions of the role of the mediator in diplomatic negotiations. My paper will trace this theme through the works of several late-Renaissance writers. Particular focus will be on Torquato Tasso, the greatest Italian poet of the late Renaissance, and Michel de Montaigne, who writes at length in his Essais about the ethics of diplomacy. I will show that both of these authors use diplomatic representation to explore the dynamics of literary representation. Thus the paper will open perspectives on how literary discourse represents the limits of political power.

Timothy Hampton is currently a Bernie Williams Professor of Comparative Literature and a Professor of French at the University of California, Berkeley. Specializing in early modern European literature and culture, he has written extensively on the relationship between literature and politics, historiography, questions of cultural transmission and cross-cultural encounters. His books include Writing from History: The Rhetoric of Exemplarity in Renaissance Literature (Cornell University Press, 1990) and Literature and Nation in the Sixteenth Century: Inventing Renaissance France (Cornell University Press, 2000), which won the Modern Language Association¹s Scaglione Prize for the best book in French and Francophone Studies. His latest book, Fictions of Embassy: Literature and Diplomacy in Early Modern Europe, will be published later this year.

Sponsored by the Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies.

Lecture: Edith Balas (Art History, CMU), "The Mother Goddess in Italian Renaissance Art" Friday, Febuary 15th at 4:00 in Frick Fine Arts Building, Room 202 at the University of Pittsburgh.

This talk is co-sponsored by the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program at the University of Pittsburgh and by the Department of History of Art and Architecture at the University of Pittsburgh.

Lecture: Sara Lipton (Department of History, SUNY Stony Brook), “Jewish Eyes, 1140-1180” Friday, Febuary 29th at 4:00 in The University of Pittsburgh's Cathedral of Learning, Room 501.

This paper examines a range of sources dating to ca. 1140-80 (hagiographical and devotional texts, liturgical objects and images, and their accompanying inscriptions) to examine distinct changes in the representation of Jews in Christian art and thought. It argues that images often read as reflecting a heightened and increasingly "racialized" anti-Judaism are, in the first instance, a by-product of how Christians desired, feared, and used representations of God. Art and society are never discrete, however, and images created to serve internal Christian purposes eventually affected Christian perceptions of actual Jews, and influenced Christian-Jewish social and legal relations.

Sponsored by the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program at the University of Pittsburgh.

Lecture: Francois Rigolot (Department of French and Italian, Princeton University), "Rabelais and the Renaissance Interpretation of Dreams" Monday, March 17th at 4:00 in The University of Pittsburgh's Cathedral of Learning, Room 501.

Sponsored by the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program at the University of Pittsburgh.

Lecture: Richard Strier (Department of English, University of Chicago), "Mind and World in The Winter's Tale" Thursday, March 20th at 4:30 in the Giant Eagle Auditorium, Baker Hall at Carnegie Mellon University.

The Carol Brown Lecture at CMU.

Lecture: Richard Strier (Department of English, University of Chicago), "Sanctifying the Bourgeoisie:  The Cultural Work of The Comedy of Errors," Friday, March 21st at 4:00 in The University of Pittsburgh's Cathedral of Learning, Room 501.

Sponsored by the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program at the University of Pittsburgh.

Lecture: Pamela Sheingorn (Professor Emerita of History, City University of New York), "Was Jesus' Foster-Father a Martyr? Constructing the Death of Joseph the Carpenter" Thursday, March 27th at 4:00 in The University of Pittsburgh's Cathedral of Learning, Room 501.

Sponsored by the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program at the University of Pittsburgh.

Lecture: Jean Howard (Department of English, Columbia), "Beatrice's Monkey: Staging Exotica on the Early Modern Stage" Monday, April 14th at Washinton & Jefferson on a topic from her most recent book, Theater of a City: The Places of London Comedy, 1598-1642 (UPenn Press, 2006).

For more information about this talk, please contact Kevin Curran (kcurran@staff.washjeff.edu).

Cross-Pittsburgh Course in 17th Century Materialism

Please enjoy these pictures of the Spring 2007 joint 17th-Century Materialism class co-taught by Mike Witmore (CMU: English) and Dan Selcer (Duquesne: Philosophy). Photos taken in the CMU Hunt Botanical Library. 1. 2.

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Fall 2007 Events
 

Lecture: Jonathan Sawday (Chair of English Studies at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow), “Calculating Engines: Minds, Bodies, Sex and Machines on the Eve of the Enlightenment” Thursday, September 27th at 4:30 in the Adamson Wing of Baker Hall at Carnegie Mellon University

The lecture explores the fascination with the idea of creating artificial life and 'thinking machines' in the pre-enlightenment period.  It concentrates on the pertinent ideas of Descartes, Hobbes, Pascal, and Leibniz, but ends by exploring the 'anti-machine' of the late seventeenth century, i.e., the malfunctioning sex machines of the notorious John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester.

Sponsored by the Humanities Center at Carnegie Mellon University and the Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies.

Lecture: Ruth Evans (Head of Department of English Studies at the University of Stirling, Scotland), "Crossing the Road with Margery Kempe" Friday, September 28th 4:30 in the University of Pittsburgh’s Cathedral of Learning, Room 501

Professor Evans has published on Chaucer, medieval virginity, Margery Kempe, medieval origin myths, Middle English religious drama, Derrida, romance, translation theory, translation in the Middle Ages, the representation of Jews in medieval texts, and fifteenth-century courtly literature, among others.

Jointly sponsored by the Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies and The Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program at the University of Pittsburgh.


Lecture: David Rothenberg (Department of Music, Case Western Reserve University) "A Maiden, a Shepherdess, and a Queen: The Parisian Assumption Vespers Services and Two Thirteenth-Century Motets," Thursday, October 18th at 4:00 pm in room 132 of the Music Building at the University of Pittsburgh

David J. Rothenberg, Assistant Professor of Music at Case Western, is a music historian with research interests in the Medieval and Renaissance periods. His articles on topics ranging from Ars antiqua motets to compositions by Heinrich Isaac, Josquin des Prez, and Orlando di Lasso appear in the Journal of the American Musicological Society, Journal of Musicology, and Musik in Bayern. Current projects include a study of Isaac's liturgical music for Emperor Maximilian I and a book about the confluence of Marian devotion and secular song in music of the thirteenth through sixteenth centuries.


Lecture: Ramie Targoff (Department of English, Brandeis University) "Making Love: Petrarch, Wyatt, and the English Love Lyric," Wednesday, November 14th at 4:00 pm at The University of Pittsburgh’s Cathedral of Learning, Room 501

Ramie Targoff is Associate Professor of English and Director of Graduate Studies at Brandeis University. Her first book, _Common Prayer: Models of Public Devotion in Early Modern England_ (Chicago, 2001) won the prize for Best Book of the Year from the Conference on Christianity and Literature. Her second book, _John Donne, Body and Soul_, will be published by Chicago University Press in 2008. She is currently at work on a book-length study of love in the Renaissance.

Sponsored by the Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies.


Lecture: Deanna Shemek (Italian and Comparative Literature, UC Santa Cruz) "From Document to Text and Back Again: Renaissance Women's Letters and the Interpretive Shuttle" Friday, November 30th at 4:00 pm at The University of Pittsburgh’s Cathedral of Learning, Room 501

Deanna Shemek is Professor of Italian and Comparative Literature and Cowell College Provost at the University of California, Santa Cruz. She has authored, edited, and translated numerous books and essays, including _Ladies Errant: Wayward Women and Social Order in Early Modern Italy_ (Duke, 1998). She is currently at work on a translation of the letters of Isabella d'Este for the University of Chicago Press and a book manuscript titled "'In Continuous Expectation': Isabella d'Este's Epistolary Dominion."

Sponsored by the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program at the University of Pittsburgh and the Department of French and Italian and the Women's Studies Program at the University of Pittsburgh.

Spring 2007 Events
 

Lecture: Larissa Taylor (Colby College), "Who Was Joan of Arc?" Friday, January 26 at 4:00 pm in the Erwin Steinberg Auditorium (Baker Hall A53) on the Carnegie Mellon campus

"Who Was Joan of Arc?"
Despite an almost unparalleled wealth of original sources from the early fifteenth century, Joan of Arc as a historical figure has been lost  to myth and politics.  Based on work for her forthcoming biography, The Maid of Lorraine: A Life of Joan of Arc (London: Yale University Press, exp. publication early 2007), Professor Taylor will provide new insights on Joan based upon her life, rather than her astonishing afterlife in the imaginations of tens of thousands of writers, artists, and screenwriters.

Larissa Taylor is currently a Professor of History and Religious  Studies at Colby College.  Specializing in medieval and early modern religious history, she has written extensively on French preaching during the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, the practice of pilgrimage, sainthood and popular devotion, and most recently, Joan of Arc.  Her books include Soldiers of Christ: Preaching In Late Medieval and Reformation France (1992), Heresy and Orthodoxy in Sixteenth-Century Paris: Francois Le Picart and The Beginning of the Catholic Reformation (1999), Preaching and People in the Reformation and Early Modern Europe (2001), and the forthcoming The Maid of Lorraine: A Life of Joan of Arc, scheduled to appear in early 2007.


Lecture: Will West (Northwestern University), "Elizabethan Dinner Theater." Friday, February 9 at 4:00 pm in the Erwin Steinberg Auditorium (Baker Hall A53) on the Carnegie Mellon Campus

Although significant critical work has been done on early modern popular theories of vision and its impact on anti-theatrical discourse, a much more common metaphorical field for the experience of playgoing in the sixteenth century was that of consumption--that is, of eating.  The event of playing was connected throughout with food and drink, both literally and imaginatively.  The tendency to talk about playmaking and playgoing as eating is linked to early modern humoral physiology, which provided an account of theatrical entertainment in ways that complimented the consumption model.  In this talk, William West will explore what it meant for early modern writers to claim that a play (or an actor) could be "chewed and digested," providing examples from both theatrical history and the history of humoral medicine.  He will also be discussing Brecht's theories of drama, particularly his mixed feelings about what he called "culinary theater."

Bio:  William N. West is Associate Professor of English and Comparative Literary Studies at Northwestern University.  He is the author of Theaters and Encyclopedias in Early Modern Europe and has published articles on less well wrought urns,  Mercutio's bad language, and the epistemology of the dinner party, among other things.  He is currently working on a book about understanding and confusion in the Elizabethan theaters.


Lecture: D. Vance Smith (Princeton University), Friday, February 23


Lecture: Bart Ehrman (UNC Chapel Hill), “Misquoting Jesus: Scribes Who Altered Scripture and Readers Who May Never Know.” Thursday, March 29th at 4 pm in Frick Fine Arts auditorium (across from the Carnegie Library) on the University of Pittsburgh campus

We do not have the original copies of any of the books of the New Testament.  The surviving manuscripts were for the most part produced centuries after the originals, by medieval scribes who were copying texts that had already been changed – sometimes significantly - from the originals.  Most of these changes were accidental, but some were evidently made in order to make the text say what it was already thought to mean.  This lecture will consider the kinds of changes made in the manuscripts over the centuries, both to see if it is possible to reconstruct an "original" text and to consider the reasons behind the alterations of the text.

Ehrman is James A. Gray Distinguished Professor in the Department of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He has published extensively in the fields of New Testament and Early Christianity, including a college-level textbook on the New Testament, two anthologies of early Christian writings, a study of the historical Jesus as an apocalyptic prophet, and a Greek-English Edition of the Apostolic Fathers for the Loeb Classical Library. His most recent books are Truth and Fiction in the DaVinci Code (2004), Misquoting Jesus: The Story of Who Changed the New Testament and Why (2005), and Peter, Paul, and Mary Magdalene: The Followers of Jesus in History and Legend (2006).

Co-sponsored by the European Studies Center, and the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Pittsburgh.


Lecture: Sarah Beckwith (Duke University, English), “Forgiving in Shakespeare's Plays.” Friday, March 30th at 4 pm in Cathedral of Learning, room 501, on the University of Pittsburgh campus

In Shakespeare's theater there are almost countless instances of the word "confession" and its cognates, yet only three instances in the entire corpus of the word "absolution." This talk examines some of the late plays as explorations of the grammar of forgiveness in a society that has fundamentally transformed the sacrament of penance, a sacrament which was not only a major resource for thinking about "interiority" but also reconciliation.

Beckwith is Marcello Lotti Professor of English at Duke University. Beckwith works on late medieval religious writing and has published on Margery Kempe, the literature of anchoritism, and medieval theatre. Her publications include Christ's Body: Identity, Religion and Society in Medieval English Writing (Routledge, 1993), and Signifying God: Social Relation and Symbolic Act in York's Play of Corpus Christi (Chicago, 2001). She is currently working on a book on medieval and Renaissance drama centering on Shakespeare and the transformation of sacramental culture.

Co-sponsored by the Departments of English and Religious Studies at the University of Pittsburgh.


Lecture: Gábor Klaniczay (CEU, Budapest) “Dreams and Visions in Medieval Miracle Accounts.” Friday, April 13 at 4 pm the Cathedral of Learning, room 501, on the University of Pittsburgh campus.

Klaniczay is Professor and Head of the Department of Medieval Studies at the Central European University, Budapest. His research focuses on the historical anthropology of medieval and early modern European popular religion (sainthood, miracle beliefs, healing, magic, witchcraft). His many publications include Holy Rulers and Blessed Princesses: Dynastic Cults in Medieval Central Europe (Cambridge, 2002) and The Uses of Supernatural Power: The Transformations of the Popular Religion in Medieval and Early Modern Europe (Princeton, 1990).

Presented by The University of Pittsburgh Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program and the Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies.

 

Fall 2006 Events
 

Lecture: Chris Braider (University of Colorado at Boulder), "The Baroque Art of the Mind: Beholding in Dutch Genre Painting." Friday, October 20 at 4:00 pm in College Hall 104 on the Duquesne University campus

Drawing especially on images by Samuel van Hoogstraten, Jan Steen, and Jan Vermeer, this talk explores what genre painters of the Dutch Golden Age made of (i.e., at once construed and constructed) the so-called "modern subject," the sovereign rational ego of both Cartesian metaphysics and northern optical science. The central focus of this exploration is the way in which, by incorporating acts of beholding in the very form of their pictures, Dutch painters dramatize the psycho-physical embodiment that, in determining how the world gets seen, exhibits the inescapably embodied nature of seeing itself. In addition to challenging the axiomatic centrality of the Cartesian model of self as disembodied mind, the example of Dutch art enables us to re-imagine not only Cartesian rationality, but the broader culture of the European baroque of which Descartes and Dutch genre painting turn out to be coordinate and characteristic (if puzzling) expressions.

Prof. Braider teaches seventeenth century French literature, interart problems in early modern Europe, the history of modern philosophy, and literary theory in the Departments of French and Comparative Literature at the University of Colorado at Boulder, and is currently a Visiting Professor in Comparative Literature at Brown University. He is the author of Refiguring the Real: Picture and Modernity in Word and Image, 1400-1700 (Princeton, 1993), Indiscernible Counterparts: The Invention of the Text in French Classical Drama (North Carolina, 2002), and Baroque Self-Invention and Historical Truth: Hercules at the Crossroads (Ashgate, 2004).
Additional support received from the Department of Philosophy and the Dean of the McAnulty College & Graduate School at Duquesne University. [poster]

Spring 2006 Events
 

 

Lecture: Daniel Heller-Roazen (Comparative Literature, Princeton) is the author, most recently, of Echolalias (Zone Books, 2004), which explores the role of forgetting in the constition of languages. He works in several ancient and modern languages and teaches in the Department of Comparative Literature at Princeton. His lecture is entitled "The Inner Touch: The Archaeology of a Sensation" and takes place at 4 pm on February 24th at College Hall 105, Duquesne University.

Lecture: Lorraine Daston (Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Berlin). Monday, 3 April at 5:30pm in the Chosky Theatre, Purnell Center for the Arts, Carnegie Mellon University. "Seeing with Another's Eyes: The Enlightenment Scientific Image," part of the Aesthetics Out of Bounds Series at Carnegie Mellon University.


Lecture: Adrian Johns (University of Chicago), "Print, Medicine and the Culture of Credit." Friday, 4 March at 4:30 pm in Frick Fine Arts, Oakland, room 125.

Adrian Johns 1998 monograph, The Nature of the Book, was one of the most important works to be published in the "history of the book" during the last decade. Continuing out tradition of inviting speakers to talk about this exciting field (beginning with our inaugural lecture by Roger Chartier), we have invited Adrian Johns to come and speak to us about his work in the history of medicine and the "culture of credit." Johns' past work has won high praise from literary and cultural historians and historians of the book. Reviewing his major study of book publishing, book pirating and rise of early modern English natural philosophy—The Nature of the Book—Merle Rubin writes in the Christian Science Monitor: "A detailed, engrossing, and genuinely eye-opening account of the formative stages of the print culture. . . . This is scholarship at its best."

Adrian Johns is an associate professor in the Department of History and the Committee on Conceptual and Historical Studies of Science at the University of Chicago. He is the author of The Nature of the Book: Print and Knowledge in the Making (University of Chicago Press, 1998), which won the Leo Gershoy Award of the American Historical Association, the John Ben Snow Prize of the North American Conference on British Studies, the Louis Gottschalk Prize of the American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies, and the SHARP Prize for the best work on the history of authorship, reading and publishing. He has also published widely in the history of science and the history of the book. Educated in Britain at the University of Cambridge, Professor Johns has taught at the University of Kent at Canterbury, the University of California, San Diego, and the California Institute of Technology. He is currently working on a history of intellectual piracy from the invention of printing to the Internet.

 

Fall 2005 Events
 

Peter Machamer (University of Pittsburgh, History and Philosophy of Science). Thursday, 22 September, 4pm in Cathedral of Learning 501. "Is Descartes Really a Dualist?"

Adrian Johns (University of Chicago, History). Monday, 3 October, 4:30pm in Frick Fine Arts (Oakland) 125. "Print, Medicine, and the Culture of Credit in Early Modern England."

Klaus Vogelgsang (Universität Augsburg, German Literature). Thursday, 13 October at 4 pm in Cathedral of Learning 501. "Late Medieval Passion Plays as Mass Media."

Jesse Gellrich (Louisiana State University, English and Comparative Literature). Friday, 21 October at 4pm in Frick Fine Arts (Oakland 202). "Oral Tradition and Illustrated Manuscripts from the Middle Ages."

 

Spring 2004 Events
 

Lecture: Rebecca Bushnell (University of Pennsylvania), "Secrets and Lies in Early Modern English Garden Books." Friday, 4 March at 4:00 pm in the H&SS Auditorium, Baker Hall A53, Carnegie Mellon University.

Rebecca Bushnell's Green Desire: Imagining Early Modern English Gardens was greeted with great enthusiasm by critics last year. The book explores a thriving early modern art form and the subtle interplay of art and nature that it implied. Last year Colin Burrow wrote in the London Review of Books that Bushnell:

writes with great sympathy and quiet wit about the mixture of empiricism, magic and popular lore in [gardening] manuals, and tells the story of the way they were superseded by the apparently more scientific works on horticulture produced under the influence of Bacon and Hartlib. She shows how gardens could be places of both fantasy and discipline, in which gentry gardeners sought to exercise power over nature, and create spaces which were in their way as artful as poems.

Bushnell's talk will focus on how readers and publishers understood the purpose of gardening manuals during the period; a collection of these texts is currently available in the research library of the Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation. After her lecture, the Hunt Institute will offer an exhibition of many of the texts treated in her talk.

Rebecca Bushnell, author of Green Desire: Imagining Early Modern English Gardens (Cornell, 2003), will be speaking on "Secrets and Lies in Early Modern English Garden Books." A reception and book exhibit of many of the texts discussed in the lecture will follow at the Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation (located on the 5th floor of the Hunt Library, Carnegie Mellon). Rebecca Bushnell is Professor of English and Dean of Arts and Sciences at the University of Pennsylvania. She is also the author of A Culture of Teaching: Early Modern Humanism in Theory and Practice (Cornell, 1996) and Tragedies of Tyrants: Political Thought and Theater in the English Renaissance (Cornell, 1990). This event is co-sponsored by the Carnegie Mellon Department of English, Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation, University of Pittsburgh Department of English, University of Pittsburgh Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program and the Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies.


Two Symposia on Florence Cathedral: Saturday, 26 February (Part 1) and Saturday, March 19 (Part 2), Frick fine Arts Building 202, University of Pittsburgh.

Five distinguished scholars of medieval history from across the country will
convene at these two symposia to debate the historical implications of
excavation results from S. Maria del Fiore, the Cathedral of Florence.

The respondents on February 26 are:


Ralph Mathisen, professor of classics at the University of Illinois and
leading American specialist in Late Antiquity;
Thomas F. X. Noble, professor of history, director of the Medieval
Institute at Notre Dame University, and scholar on the medieval papacy.

The respondents on March 19 are:


Thomas Head, professor of history at Hunter College and leading American
specialist in hagiography and the cult of saints;
Patrick Geary, professor of medieval history at the University of
California, Los Angeles, and a scholar of medieval relics;
John Howe, professor of history at Texas Tech University and a specialist
in the eleventh-century church reform, in which Florence Cathedral played a
key role.

The sessions are free and open to the public; no prior registration is
needed. More information is available by e-mailing Prof. Frank Toker (Univ. of Pittsburgh) or calling at 412-648-2419 for conference details. Professor Toker can also make available his 143-page text on historical issues raised by the excavation results, which will be the basis on which these five respondents will speak.

The two symposia are funded through the Samuel H. Kress Foundation, the
University of Pittsburgh School of Arts and Sciences, and the University
Honors College.


Special Event: "Jacques Rancière: Politics and Aesthetics" a conference. March 18-19 2005, 2501 Posvar Hall, University of Pittsburgh.

Participants include: Jacques Rancière (professsor emeritus of aesthetics, University of Paris VIII), Kristin Ross (professor of comparative literature, NYU) , Yves Citton (professor of French literature, University of Grenoble), Bruno Bosteels (assistant professor of Spanish literature, Cornell), Peter Hallward (professor of French, King's College London), Todd May (professor of philosophy, Clemson University), Deborah Blocker (assistant professor of French, University of Pittsburgh), James Swenson (associate professor of French, Rutgers University) , Andrew Parker (professor of English, Amherst College), Solange Guénoun (professor of French, University of Connecticut), Eric Méchoulan (professor of French literature, University of Montreal), Ronald Judy (professor of English, University of Pittsburgh), Gabriel Rockhill (Philosophy, Emory University) and Raji Vallury (assistant professor of French, Kenyon College).

Please e-mail Déborah Blocker for conference details.


Lecture: Niklaus Largier (University of California, Berkeley), "Theaters of Arousal: Medieval and Early Modern Ascetic Practices and the Invention of Pornography." Thursday, 31 March at 4:00 pm at the Berger Gallery, McAnulty College Hall 207, Duquesne University.

In this talk, Professor Largier will discuss the theatrical aspects of medieval and early modern cultures of arousal, focusing on the practice of flagellation, its implications for the history of imagination and emotions, and the origin of early modern pornography from Aretino's Dialogues to Thérèse philosophe. The lecture is related to Largier’s most recent book, Lob der Peitsche. Eine Kulturgeschichte der Erregung or Praise the Whip: A Cultural History of Arousal (C.H. Beck, ZONE Books translation forthcoming), which explores the relation among bodily ascetic practices, eroticism, and literary imagination in the Middle Ages and early modernity.

Parking validation is available for the Forbes Ave. University Parking Garage.
Sponsored by the Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies, the Duquesne University Department of Philosophy, and the Duquesne University McAnulty College of Liberal Arts and Sciences NEH Endowment Fund.


Lecture: Kathleen Weil-Garris Brandt (New York University), “Person and Persona in Renaissance Portraits: Some Alternative Approaches.” Friday, 19 November at 4:00 pm in Frick Fine Arts Bldg 202.

A student of Italian Renaissance art and architecture, Professor Brandt's
publications include books on Leonardo da Vinci, sixteenth-century
sculpture, and Renaissance palaces. As permanent consultant for Renaissance
art to the Vatican Museums, Professor Brandt was a member of the Vatican
team for the cleaning, conservation, and study of Michelangelo's frescoes in
the Sistine Chapel and which now begins work on the Pauline Chapel.

There will be a reception immediately following Professor Brandt’s lecture.
 
This event has been co-sponsored by the University of Pittsburgh History of Art and Architecture Department and the Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and
Renaissance Studies.


Lecture: Elliot Wolfson (New York University), “Othering the Other: Polemic Images of Christianity and Islam in Medieval Kabbalah.”
Tuesday, November 2nd, 4 pm in William Pitt Union, University of Pittsburgh, Dining Room A

Elliot Wolfson is the Judge Abraham Lieberman Professor of Hebrew Studies at NYU. He is an expert in Jewish mysticism and philosophy and publishes widely on gender construction and the history of religion.  His numerous books include Through a Speculum That Shines: Vision and Imagination in Medieval Jewish Mysticism (Princeton University Press, 1994), which won the American Academy of Religion Award for Excellence in Historical Studies.
 
This talk has been organized by the University of Pittsburgh departments of Jewish Studies and Religious Studies.


Lecture: Rosamond Wolff Purcell
Friday, October 29th, 4 pm, Adamson Wing 136a Baker Hall (first floor, down the hall from Hunt Library entrance), Carnegie Mellon

Rosamond Purcell, distinguished photographer, artist, collector and author, will be lecturing on her most recent project, the "Two Rooms" installation at Harvard -- apainstaking recreation of the Danish naturalist Olaus Worm's curiosity cabinet (1657) with a contemporary "collection" curated by the artist. Purcell has collaborated with Stephen Jay Gould on a book about collecting and collectors entitled Finders Keepers, is the author of Special Cases — a study of monsters and marvels in early modernity — and most recently, Owl's Head, a series of essays on her relationship with William Buckminster and his prolific collection of junk in Maine.

Purcell will be discussing her recent extension of the "Two Rooms" project, whichinvolves reproducing various seventeenth century display techniques and objects. The lecture should be of interest to anyone interested in the history of museums and collecting, Renaissance art and aesthetics, and contemporary art and photography. It is co-sponsored by the Silver Eye Gallery in Pittsburgh and the Center for the Arts and Society, Carnegie Mellon University.


Lecture: William Kennedy (Cornell University), "Petrarch and Ronsard as ‘Economic Men’: Interest and Growth in the Rime sparse and the Futures of Later Petrarchism"
Friday, October 22nd, 4 pm, Cathedral of Learning 501

William J. Kennedy teaches the history of European literature and literary criticism from antiquity to the early modern period. His interests focus on Italian, French, English, and German texts from Dante to Milton. His Jacopo Sannazaro and the Uses of Pastoral (University Press of New England, 1983), recipient of the MLA's Marraro Prize, traces the rise of modern pastoral from ancient models. His Authorizing Petrarch (Cornell University Press, 1994) explores the canonizing imitations of that poet's work throughout Europe. His most recent book is The Site of Petrarchism: Early Modern National Sentiment in Italy, France, and England (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2003). This event has been co-sponsored by Pitt’s Center for West European Studies and the Pittsburgh Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies.


Lecture: Eve Sussman
Friday, October 15, 4 pm, Adamson Wing 136a Baker Hall (first floor, downthe hall from Hunt Library entrance), Carnegie Mellon

Eve Sussman's work recieved wide acclaim this year at the Whitney Biennial where she exhibited her piece, "89 Seconds at Alcazar," a high-definition video recreation of the scene surrounding the painting of Velasquez's "Las Meninas." Of the piece, Mark Stevens writes in New York Magazine:


For those who love painting, the most memorable work in the show will probably not be a painting but Eve Sussman’s "89 Seconds at Alcazar," an astonishing video that shows Velázquez painting Las Meninas. As the master paints, we see the king and queen, the dwarf, the little prince, the burly dog, and the servants wandering about the room. Sometimes, they are talking, but what we hear is like the murmur of voices from another room. The work is uncanny. The characters have stepped out of art into art, our art.

Eve Sussman is the first speaker in this year's special pairing of lectures on "Renaissance Visuals." A snapshot from the twelve minute video installation can be viewed at the HD Cinema Site. This event is co-sponsored by the Carnegie Mellon Department of Art.

 

Spring 2004 Events
 

Last spring was the first semester in which the PCMRS promoted or sponsored local events of interest to the medieval and renaissance studies community. Some of these events included:

Lecture: Déborah Blocker, "Mapping Out Discourses on Poetry and the Arts in Early Modern Europe, 1500-1800"
Friday, January 30, 2004

Déborah Blocker is Assistant Professor of French, Department of French and Italian, University of Pittsburgh. In her lecture she will discuss a number of discourses which emerged in Europe between 1500 and 1800 to characterize and evaluate the works produced in the sphere of the arts and letters.


Lecture: Katharine Eisaman Maus, "Idol and Gift in Jonson's Volpone"
Friday, February 27, 2004

Katharine Eisaman Maus is James Branch Cabell Professor of English at the University of Virginia. She is author of Inwardness and Theater in the English Renaissance and co-editor of the Norton Shakespeare.


International Milton Congress
Thursday-Saturday, March 11-13, 2004, Duquesne Union

The International Milton Congress, whose theme is "Milton In Context," will be meeting at Duquesne University this March. Logistical and program information can be found at http://www.miltoncongress.onlyhere.net. Plenary speakers include Stanley Fish, Michael Lieb, David Loewenstein, and Annabel Patterson.


PCMRS Inaugural Lecture: Roger Chartier
Friday, March 19, 2004: "Don Quixote in the Printshop"

Don McKenzie has characterized the sociology of texts as “the discipline that studies texts as recorded forms, and the processes of their transmission, including their production and reception.” Following Don Quixote into the printshop, this lecture will explore how a number of fictional works in the early modern period appropriated such processes and referred to the techniques and individuals involved in the production and reception of “texts as recorded forms.”

Roger Chartier is the Directeur d’études, École des Hautes Études en
Sciences Sociales, Paris, and currently the Annenberg Visiting Professor of
History, University of Pennsylvania. A widely admired cultural historian, he
has made invaluable contributions to the overlapping fields of the history
of the book and the history of reading and print culture, as well as many
areas of early modern literature and historiography.


Gautier de Coincy Conference Program
March 20-21, 202 Frick Fine Arts Auditorium

Saturday 20 March

9h  Welcome and Introduction, Alison Stones (University of Pittsburgh) and Kathy Krause (University of Missouri, Kansas City)

9h 10 – 10h30: Les Miracles dans les Manuscrits
Moderator: Renate Blumenfeld-Kosinski
       Karen Duys: Book Design and the Figure of the Author
       Olivier Collet: La tradition manuscrite des Miracles et le genre de l’oeuvre

10h45 – 12h15: Miracle et Religion
Moderator: Kathy Krause
       Renate Blumenfeld-Kosinski: Gautier and the Typologie of Childbirth Miracles
       Laurel Broughton: Incarnational Piety in Gautier's Miracles of the Virgin
       Yasmina Foehr-Janssens: Histoire poétique du péché: de quelques figures littéraires de la faute dans les Miracle

1h45-3h15: Femmes et Images
Moderator: Bruce Venarde
       Nancy Black: Images of the Virgin Mary in the Soissons Manuscript (B.N. n. a. fr. 24541)
       Kathy Krause: Imagining Women in the Miracles
       Adrian Tudor: Telling the Same Tale? The Miracles de Nostre Dame and the Vie des Pères

3h30-4h30: Gautier et les mots
Moderator: Barbara Sargent-Baur
       Pierre Kunstmann: L'annominatio chez Gautier: vocabulaire et syntaxe
       Robert Clark: Gautier's Wordplay as Devotional Ecstasy

Sunday 21 March

9h15-11h: Gautier et les autres
Moderator: Mary Lewis
       Alison Stones: The Artistic Context of Some Miracles Manuscripts
       Frédéric Billiet: L'adaptation musicale dans l'oeuvre de Gautier de Coincy
       Brian J. Levy: Or escoutez une merveille!' Parallel Paths: Gautier's Miracles and the Fabliaux

11h15-12h15: Table Ronde
Discussion by all participants, led by Ardis Butterfield

These events are free and open to the public. For more information, contact Alison Stones (mastones@hotmail.com or 412 648 2420).

 


Lecture: Natasha Korda, “A Cry of Players”
Friday, March 26, 2004, Cathedral of Learning

Natasha Korda is Associate Professor of English at Wesleyan University. She
is author of Shakespeare’s Domestic Economies: Gender and Property in Early
Modern England
(University of Pennsylvania Press, 2002) and co-editor with
Jonathan Gil Harris of Staged Properties in Early Modern Drama (Cambridge
University Press, 2002). Her paper looks at the representation of itinerant women street vendors and their "cries" in plays, prints, ballads, and court music, and their place in the informal economy of early modern London. The paper is framed by a
discussion of Hamlet's advice to the players, and the rhetorical function of
"cries" in that play (hence its title).

 
 

 

 

 

Selected Member Publications
 
 
 
 
© Carnegie Mellon University 2003